Black Caucus Chair Ald. Jason Ervin (28th Ward) said the City Council should act quickly and loosen the rules because the legal sale of cannabis is “raining hundred-dollar bills” and those hurt by the war on drugs should be able to take advantage of the gold rush.
A push by Mayor Lori Lightfoot to allow cannabis to be sold legally downtown cleared a key city panel on Wednesday, even though it won’t allow Michigan Avenue to become a “pot paradise.”
Illinois today selected another 55 winners from a pool of 589 qualifying applicants seeking to open cannabis dispensaries. It’s another step on a long-delayed process of growing Illinois’ marijuana market, with a mind toward social equity. But is it working?
Illinois dispensaries sold a record $127.8 million in recreational marijuana in July, with a big boost coming from out-of-state fans who converged on Chicago for the Lollapalooza music festival.
When recreational marijuana was legalized in Illinois, Gov. J. B. Pritzker’s stated goal was to use the burgeoning industry to reverse the harm done to Black and brown communities during the war on drugs. But those profiting from pot sales are nearly all white men.
Three lotteries have been set where successful applicants will win coveted licenses to collectively open another 185 cannabis dispensaries throughout Illinois.
Amazon, the second-largest private employer in the U.S. behind Walmart, is making the change as states legalize cannabis or introduce laws banning employers from testing for it.
Plans to expand a medical marijuana dispensary on Chicago’s Far Northwest Side are on hold after members of the City Council’s Black Caucus blocked them from advancing over concerns that none of its owners are Black or Latino.
The Illinois legislature has just over a month left in its spring session. On the docket is a fix for how the state awards licenses to operate in the legal cannabis industry. Consumers may not notice it, but the licensing process has been plagued with issues.
It’s been one year since recreational marijuana became legal in Illinois. Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s senior adviser for cannabis control talks about how Illinois aims to expand access to marijuana dispensary licenses after intense criticism from equity advocates.
In killing a proposal from one of her City Council allies to allow cannabis to be sold legally downtown and in the Loop, Mayor Lori Lightfoot told reporters “we’re not turning Michigan Avenue into the pot paradise.”
Recreational marijuana has been legal in Illinois for just over a year — and sales were better than expected. Crain’s Chicago Business editor Ann Dwyer has details.
In the first year since Illinois legalized recreational marijuana, the Illinois State Police expunged 492,192 non-felony cannabis arrest records, Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s office announced on Thursday.
Friday marks one year since it became legal to buy and use marijuana in Illinois. But what about the thousands of people who previously got in trouble for possessing, smoking or selling pot?
Illinois’ recreational marijuana program was set up to right the wrongs of a war on drugs by giving a leg up to those from disadvantaged communities or who had been punished for low-level drug crimes. But nearly a year later, social equity applicants remain locked out.