Illinois Gov Won’t Extend MMJ Pilot Program Yet

In response to attempts by lawmakers to extend the timeline for the state’s medical cannabis pilot program, Gov. Bruce Rauner made it clear on Monday that he isn’t going to sign an extension.

“The governor believes there is a lot of time left to evaluate a pilot program, and we should not extend the program until it has been fully evaluated,” a Rauner spokeswoman said in a statement, according to The Associated Press.

As the situation stands now, the state’s entire MMJ program is scheduled to expire at the end of 2017, after what was initially intended to be a four-year stint once the Legislature approved medical cannabis in 2013. But various delays have set the business licensing process back so far that dispensaries and cultivation sites will only have a two-and-a-half-year window – max – to actually operate until the pilot program expires.

Lawmakers could extend the program at that time, but the uncertainty makes it tough for entrepreneurs.

State Rep. Lou Lang, a longtime MMJ proponent, has introduced a measure that would start the four-year clock running when the first dispensary opens, which will probably be later this year. But if it passes the legislature, and Rauner vetoes it, that leaves Illinois MMJ entrepreneurs in the unenviable position of not knowing whether or not their businesses will still be legal in 2018.

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2 comments on “Illinois Gov Won’t Extend MMJ Pilot Program Yet
  1. gentle Jim on

    The only way, We, (All, as a Free People) will prevent a total monopoly of cannabis by international mega investors, who will have no interest in our health and well being. Just their profits!! Will be to demand the publics right to cultivate for personal use and health needs. this will keep the market price tempered buy patients options open. And NO Tyranny from great wealth.
    Keep cannabis’s benefits and opportunities for all to share. Not for just a few mega firms to benefit. From all the hard work of all the pioneers from the grass roots that got MMJ to were it is today.
    Let’s Save Medicare cost, with MMJ for seniors. Why must we sell our right to be free and healthy to corporations? When did we give Wall street the right to leverage our very health and/or our lives, for annually ever- increasing profits? Doesn’t that make us health slaves?

  2. Miss Bobbi on

    You go gentle Jim! On to the second problem – Where to find a doctor??? What’s up with having a program for a year yet still no physicians, no dispensaries, no program.

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