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Governor of Illinois plans to sign recreational marijuana bill

Governor of Illinois plans to sign recreational marijuana bill”

Illinois Governor JB Pritzker signed into law new legislation Tuesday that will legalize the possession and consumption of recreational marijuana on January 1, 2020.

Legalization in IL also means that almost 800,000 people with criminal records for purchasing or possessing 30 grams of marijuana or less may have those records expunged, a provision minority lawmakers and interest groups demanded.

Legalization in IL also means that almost 800,000 people with criminal records for purchasing or possessing 30 grams of marijuana or less may have those records expunged, a provision minority lawmakers and interest groups demanded. Nonresidents could have 15 grams.

Prtizker, a Democrat, campaigned on the issue and his election boosted an existing effort for legalization in the state.

He claimed that, once established, taxation of marijuana could generate $800 million to $1 billion a year in taxes. "The time for justice is now, especially for communities of color who have always been disproportionately impacted by low-level cannabis convictions and the failed war on drugs".

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The measure establishes a grant program - the Restore, Reinvest, and Renew Program - to help communities affected by the War on Drugs and a $30 million low-interest loan program for qualified applicants who wish to start a licensed cannabis business.

Police organizations are wary, concerned about enforcing driving under the influence laws and arguing technology for testing marijuana impairment needs more development.

Under the law, medical patients would be permitted to buy marijuana seeds and grow up to five plants at home, so long as the plants are kept out of public view.

IL is the first state to legalize recreational marijuana sales through legislation, a process that has proved tricky even in states with Democrat-controlled statehouses that have been more receptive to changing drug laws. Vermont and MI a year ago were the latest states to legalize marijuana. Legislation to legalize it in NY and New Jersey this spring fizzled. Vermont did so through the Legislature, the first time it wasn't done through a ballot initiative, but didn't establish a statewide marketplace as IL did.



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