Illinois Issues 149 Cannabis Retailer Licenses

Illinois Governor JB Pritzker said on Friday that the Illinois Financial Experts and Regulatory Authority (IDFPR) had 149 conditions for adult cannabis retailers to be selected by three lottery applicants held earlier this summer. Announced that it has issued a state license. All selected businesses are eligible to apply for social justice under the state cannabis regulation and tax law, the 2019 bill that legalized recreation pots for adults throughout the state.

“Illinois is leading the war on drugs, as no other state has ever had, and clinic ownership, which reflects the diversity of the state, is the product of that effort.” Pritzker said In a statement from the Governor’s Office on Friday. “These licenses represent an important step towards decades of fraud accountability prior to the legalization of cannabis. Illinois continues to fulfill its commitment to be fair at the forefront of this process. increase.”

Retail sales began in Illinois two years ago

Illinois’s cannabis regulation and tax law was the first adult cannabis legalization measure in the United States passed by the state legislature, rather than a voter-approved voting initiative. Adult cannabis sales began in 2020 at existing clinics.

However, adult cannabis retailer licenses are characterized by setbacks and legal challenges to the state system for obtaining a license for the recreational cannabis business. Much of the controversy focuses on state efforts to ensure that community members affected by ban and enforcement policies have a path to business ownership in the newly legalized adult cannabis industry. I’ve been doing it. The first 75 licenses were originally scheduled to be granted in May 2020, but the proceedings have been delayed several times.

“Since 2019, we have been working hard to bring communities disproportionately affected by cannabis bans and discriminatory law enforcement into the adult cannabis industry,” said Senate Majority Leader. Kimberly A. Wrightford said. “With the release of 149 conditional adult pharmacy organization licenses, Illinois will be at the forefront of minority ownership of cannabis and will continue to promote social equality, social justice and market entry.”

Of the conditional use licensees selected by lottery, 41% are black-owned, 7% are white-owned, 4% are Latin-owned, and 38% of the winners do not disclose the owner’s race. .. State officials said: “Illinois has made the greatest commitment to adult cannabis tax revenues to reinvest in the community, erasing the most criminal records associated with cannabis, and the country.”

Licensee has 6 months to get final approval

Applicants currently have 180 days to secure a place of business and receive final license approval from state regulators. If the conditional licensee fails to secure a suitable place of business within that time, it is allowed to apply for a 180-day extension to complete the process.

“The release of these licenses represents a transformation of the retail industry in the cannabis industry in Illinois, increasing the opportunities for individuals of all backgrounds to enjoy the benefits of legalization as employees and ancillary service providers,” said Mario Treto. The Junior Secretary-General said. Illinois Treasury Expert Regulatory Authority. “These licensees continue to lay the foundation for a more diverse and equitable cannabis industry than any other cannabis industry in the country. I am very proud of our team for their work over the last two years. I am looking forward to working with these new businesses [sic] Owner through the next stage of the license. “

Many business owners selected as licensees for conditional adult retailers may face the challenge of raising funds to protect their site and get it up and running. Through another program managed by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), the state offers low-interest loans to qualified licensed companies through the Social Fair Cannabis Loan Program.

The first round of social equity license applicants will sign direct loan agreements with DCEO’s participating lenders in the coming weeks, and the next phase of the loan program will begin in the near future.Additional information about the Social Equity Cannabis Loan Program is available online.. DCEO also funds free licenses and post-license technical assistance through partners at Oakton Community College, Trepp School, Women’s Business Development Center, and Chicago Law School, University of Illinois. Additional information on these resources and how to access them is available. Program website..

Akele Parnell, co-owner of Marigrow, one of the selected conditional applicants, will open a clinic in Lincoln Park near Chicago. The business has already raised the necessary capital and is ready to move on to the next step in the process.

“We have the money” Parnell said Klein Chicago. “Now we need to rezoning.”

“It was a long wait. I’m relieved that I have the license now,” Parnell added. “There is a lot of work going on.”

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