Hundreds apply to grow, process and sell pot in Washington

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The Pot Prospectors Photo Essay
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The Pot Prospectors Photo Essay
Steve Smith poses at his home in Gig Harbor, Wash., Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2013. For a guy with a uniform and a gun, Smith was unusually welcome at medical marijuana dispensaries. Of course, he was a security guard, not a federal drug agent. Smith, 29, had a background in food marketing. His father worked for a large grocery cooperative in California. He earned a degree in agriculture business management and started marketing organic and natural products for a food broker. He liked thinking he was helping people eat better. A friend who was working in security suggested Smith do the same. Looking to keep busy and make some extra money, he took his training and became a certified security guard. The company that hired him happened to assign him to a couple of medical marijuana dispensaries. “You can only work as a guard for so long before you want to open your own shop,” he says. He wants to apply to open two retail marijuana shops near Tacoma. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)