Judge Allows Illinois Regulators to Rescore Cannabis Applications
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Judge Allows Illinois Regulators to Rescore Cannabis Applications

Sangamon County Judge Adam Giganti denied a request to bar officials from rescoring the applications, which now allows the controversial licensing process to move forward.

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November 13, 2020

Sangamon County Judge Adam Giganti has allowed Illinois regulators to rescore cannabis applications as part of the state’s controversial licensing process to issue 75 new dispensary licenses, according to the Chicago Tribune.

On Nov. 12, Giganti denied a request to bar officials from rescoring the applications, ruling that the plaintiffs have not shown that they will be irreparably harmed by allowing the licensing do-over to continue, the news outlet reported.

Giganti’s ruling comes after three finalists included in a licensing lottery to win one of the coveted retail licenses filed a lawsuit over Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s plan to offer unsuccessful applicants a second chance to qualify for the lottery.

Illinois regulators announced in September that 21 social equity applicants would be included in the lottery. A group of companies behind some of the unsuccessful bids then filed a federal lawsuit, alleging political motivation behind the number of businesses included in the lottery. Pritzker then announced that unsuccessful applicants could amend and resubmit their applications, or ask the state to rescore them if they believed a mistake was made during the initial scoring process, which caused the three finalists to sue.

After the Illinois Supreme Court declined to hear the case, the plaintiffs filed the lawsuit in lower court, where a judge ordered regulators not to rescore the applications while the case played out.

In the latest ruling, Giganti wrote that an injunction would disrupt and delay the awarding of the dispensary licenses, and that the “public interest” favors allowing the rescoring to proceed as planned, according to the Chicago Tribune.