Recent News: Another State Legalized Marijuana in the USA

Illinois – the land of Lincoln legally allowed recreational marijuana and become the first state. The process legalized via the legislative process than the ballot initiative.

The state becomes the latest one for the sales and consumption of marijuana in the legally dealing marketplace.

House bill 1438 law was signed by Gov. J.B. on 25th June 2019 in which marijuana consumption was made legal statewide apart for nonmedical reasons. The sale will start on 1st January 2020 legally.

According to this new law of Illinois, people aged 21 and above can have 30 grams of marijuana. The people who need marijuana for medical needs are allowed to grow it at home. The recreational users of marijuana are not allowed to grow marijuana at home.

It is mentioned in clause HB 1438 of the new law that the person who is arrested for the illegal possession of marijuana will face expungement provision. The person who is convicted involved in 30 grams or less marijuana will have the criminal record which is referred to the state’s Prisoner Review Board and after that Gov. J.B. Pritzker for an apology – as the conviction is not associated with some fierce crime.

According to the Annual report, 2017 of Illinois Department of Corrections’ Fiscal, 360 people on parole and 372 were sentenced prison on cannabis charges in the State as of 30th June 2017.

A licensure system is also created for the people at huge startup charges who want to dispense and cultivate marijuana for the marketplace. The application fee costs $100,000, Cannabis Business Development fee will be paid by dispensaries, which will be 5% of the total annual company’s sale or $750,000 flat amount – not below $250,000.

After this move, Illinois becomes the second state in Midwest and 11th state in the nation for legalizing recreational marijuana. A referendum was approved by the voter in Michigan for marijuana legalization. Illinois in the nation become the first state who legalized recreational marijuana not through ballot initiative but the legislative process.

For Illinoisans, few frequently asked questions are entertained for a better understanding of this new law:

Since when marijuana will be available to buy in Illinois?

From 1st January 2020 – consumers can buy marijuana for only recreational use from sellers who has the license for it.

Who is eligible to buy marijuana?

People ages 21 or above are eligible to buy only from licensed sellers of Illinois. Having a medical marijuana card is not compulsory.

Who will have the legal authority to sell marijuana?

Initially, in January 2020, the only legal seller will be medical marijuana dispensaries can sell recreational marijuana. From mid-2020, the state will grant the licenses to other new cultivators, stores, transporters, and processors.

According to Marijuana Business Daily, by 2020, Up to 295 stores would be operational in Illinois. It will be in the power of the municipal government and the country to decide to allow the seller to work in their zone.

How much marijuana can be possessed at a time?

Legal possession has a limit of 30 grams which is almost equivalent to an ounce if cannabis plant flowers. 5 grams of cannabis concentrate is the legal limit. Tinctures or edibles, which are cannabis-infused products, has a limit of 5oo milligrams of THC, used as a drug to get high. Illinois visitors can possess half of that amount after its legalization in the state.

At what places smoking is legal?

In your own house and on-site places who run a business related to cannabis, smoking is legal.  Prohibited areas include:

  • Parks, public places or streets
  • In vehicles
  • In school premises, the case of medical uses is exceptional
  • Not in front or near underage people mentioned in law (below 21)
  • Near police officer, correction officer, school bus driver or firefighter

Any landlord, person on business are allowed to ban or prohibit the use of marijuana at their property. Even universities and colleges of Illinois are free to ban or allow marijuana on their premises.

Does anyone allow to grow marijuana?

At a time only 5 plants are allowed to grow by the medical patient who needs marijuana as the prescription. Non-patient cannot do so. More than 5 plants will be fined $200 by a civil penalty.

What tax will be applied?

10% sales tax will be implied on the purchase of products or flowers (cannabis) with less than 35% THC. 20% tax on Cannabis-infused goods. More than 35% of THC concentration products will have a 25% tax on them. Additional local sales tax can be charged by Illinois municipalities.

According to a new law, gross 7% of receipts tax on sale from cultivators to dispensaries will be imposed which will also affect the consumer prices as well.

Can anyone drive a vehicle under the influence of marijuana?

The law is already existing in Illinois that driver who has five nanograms or more than of THC in their blood concentration will be guilty of driving under influence.

This decision might resolve many health diseases like Cancer, Chronic illness, MS fibromyalgia, etc. I hope its a great news for people of Illinois.

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