Filling the Coffers With Cannabis Cash

Some communities are cashing in on medical marijuana and raking in millions.

When its state contract was terminated in 2011, the Claremont Custody Center was a relatively small prison, housing just over 500 of California’s thousands of inmates. For years, its 77,000-square-foot expanse sat abandoned punctuating the misfortune of Coalinga.

The city, which has a population of over 16,000, started as an oil strike. Chevron still maintains an oil field that provides local employment, but until 2011, locals also had relied heavily on the CCC and nearby Pleasant Valley State Prison for jobs, with a local mental hospital and the agriculture sector picking up some of the remaining slack.

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