Illinois Awards Final Round of Adult-Use Cannabis Dispensary Licenses
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Illinois Awards Final Round of Adult-Use Cannabis Dispensary Licenses

Regulators have issued 185 total retail licenses to social equity applicants.

August 31, 2022

Illinois officials announced Aug. 19 that the state’s 185 total adult-use cannabis dispensary licenses have been issued to social equity applicants.

Gov. JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) awarded three additional Conditional Adult Use Dispensing Organization Licenses to applicants who were selected in lotteries held in the summer of 2021.

The final three awardees join 182 others who were awarded conditional licenses in July and early August.

All of the license winners qualify as Social Equity Applicants as defined in Illinois’ Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act, which passed in 2019 to legalize adult-use cannabis in the state.

A full list of awardees can be found here.

“Illinois is a pioneer, leading the way in cannabis legalization that is equity-centered,” Pritzker said in a public statement. “With all 185 conditional licenses now in the hands of social equity applicants, we have reached a tremendous milestone. Now, we look forward to getting these businesses up and running, creating jobs in the communities most harmed by the failed drug war, and cementing ownership in Illinois’ cannabis industry as the most diverse in the nation.”

Forty-one percent of the businesses selected through the licensing lottery are majority Black-owned, according to the IDFPR’s announcement, while 7% are majority white-owned, 4% are majority Latino-owned and 38% declined to disclose the race of their owners.

Conditional licensees have 180 days to select a physical location for their dispensaries and obtain a full Adult Use Dispensing Organization License, which will allow them to open their doors to customers. If an awardee is unable to find a suitable storefront location within the 180-day timeframe, he or she may request one 180-day extension.

“I am pleased the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation fulfilled its statutory requirement and issued these 185 conditional dispensary licenses,” IDFPR Secretary Mario Treto, Jr., said in a public statement. “The release of these remaining licenses means ownership of cannabis dispensaries in Illinois is now more inclusive and diverse than ever before, and we look forward to taking the next steps together to continue implementing the most equitable cannabis program in the country."