A drug-free work place policy for Livingston County employees is being amended as a result of the legalization of recreational marijuana.

The county adopted a Drug-Free Work Place Policy Statement in 1992 and a Personnel Manual for non-union employees that was last revised in September of 2017. The original Personnel Manual stated that employees cannot possess, distribute, use or be impaired by alcohol or illegal prohibited drugs on Livingston County property, while on Livingston County business, or during working hours, including rest and meal periods. It also stated that if management believes an employee is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, the county can require the employee to submit to blood, breath or urine testing.

However officials recently requested an amendment to the manual and policy, after voters last month passed Proposal 1, which established the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act. The proposal legalized the purchase, possession and use of marijuana with a few restrictions. County officials say after reviewing the Personnel Manual and policy in light of the recent change in law, counsel recommended clarifications and updates to the document.

The amendments specifically list marijuana as one of the substances that cannot be possessed, distributed or used by employees while on county business or during working hours. Marijuana has also been added as one of the substances that employees can be tested for if management believes them to be under the influence. The county’s Board of Commissioners approved the amended policy and manual at a recent meeting. (DK)