Illinois Governor Expected to Sign Adult-Use Cannabis Bill This Week

Last month, the state became the first in the nation to approve a legalization and cannabis regulation measure via its legislative process.

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Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker is expected to sign the state’s adult-use cannabis legalization bill into law June 25, according to a WTTW report.

With Pritzker’s expected signature, Illinois will become the 11th U.S. state to legalize and regulate adult-use cannabis, and the first to do so through its legislature.

The state’s House passed the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act (CRTA) in a 66-47 vote May 31, the last day before adjournment. The Senate passed the measure May 29.

“It’s fantastic. It’s the first legislature in the country to pass legalization,” Chris Lindsey, senior legislative counsel for the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) told Cannabis Business Times upon the House’s passage of the bill. “It’s got absolutely historic equity provisions. It does an amazing amount to try to reduce the harms caused by the war on cannabis. It just hits so many of the notes. I’m extremely proud of everybody that was working in Illinois to make it possible.”

The legislation mandates that starting Jan. 1, 2020, individuals 21 and older can legally possess up to 30 grams of flower, five grams of THC concentrate and five grams of THC in a cannabis-infused product. The state will establish a regulatory structure to license and regulate cannabis businesses, and registered medical marijuana patients will be able to grow up to five plants at home, although this provision does not extend to the adult-use market.

The bill also includes expungement measures that allow past convictions of up to 30 grams of cannabis to be cleared automatically. For cases involving greater than 30 grams and up to 500 grams, individuals and the state’s attorneys can petition a court to vacate the convictions.

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