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HomeIllinois NewsGov Pritzker high on first week's nearly $11 M in cannabis sales

Gov Pritzker high on first week’s nearly $11 M in cannabis sales




CHICAGO – Governor Pritzker's office couldn't wait to send out the figures on Illinois' first week of recreational cannabis sales – Illinoisans volunteered nearly $11 million of their hard-earned dollars to fund  271,169 cannabis buys. 




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From the Pritzker Administration's office:

As part of the state's focus on equity, 25 percent of cannabis sales tax revenues will support the Restore, Reinvest and Renew (R3) program, which aims to address the impact of economic disinvestment, violence and the historical overuse of the criminal justice system. The Department of Revenue expects to have a tax revenue estimate by the end of February, when initial tax payments from dispensaries are due.
“The successful launch of this new industry is a historic development for our state that will benefit the very communities that have been disproportionately impacted by the failed war on drugs,” said Toi Hutchinson, Senior Advisor to the Governor for Cannabis Control. “As we move into the next phase, the Pritzker administration is proud to see the robust interest in dispensary ownership from social equity applicants, and we encourage them to apply for $30 million in loans that we have available to reduce the capital barriers to entry. Unlike any state in the nation, Illinois has set the standard for what it means to legalize cannabis in a way that begins to right the wrongs of the past and gives new opportunity to those that have been left behind for far too long.”

On Thursday, January 2, the Department concluded the first round of applications for new dispensary licenses. A preliminary count shows that more than 700 applicants submitted applications seeking almost 4,000 licenses. More than 600 of the applicants identified themselves as qualifying for social equity applicant status. The Department will award up to 75 new dispensary licenses, which will be announced by May 1, 2020.

The application process provides several avenues for social equity applicants that are unique in the nation. Of the total points possibly awarded during application scoring, 20 percent are designated for social equity applicants, who also receive a 50 percent waiver for non-refundable application and license fees.

To defray the start-up costs associated with entering the industry, social equity applicants have access to a low-cost loan fund, primarily funded by existing dispensaries, and are allowed 180 days from the license award date to identify a physical location for the dispensary. Ownership limitations are also in place to protect market share for new applicants. Following the awarding of the next round of  dispensary licenses, the state will also conduct a disparity study to ensure the market reflects the equity goals of the historic legislation.


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  1. headline in chicago trib … “how to get high” as if they don’t know already…. remember lotto was to help the schools … riverboats to help the recession …. video gambling ? now marijuana. Is Prostitution Next ? useless Democrat politicians adding to the culture of our state classless… watch the numbers next year of taxpayers who move cause they don’t wanna live with classless .. or support them..

  2. The persons who legally smoke recreational dope, will limit their job opportunities making it more likely they will be unemployed. I think the state legislature should enact a law which would prevent recreational dope smokers from receiving welfare because they are unable to find a good paying job because they can’t pass a drug screen. As it stands the state legislature makes recreational dope smoking legal but that prevents employment with employers who require their new employees pass a drug screen. Yet the state legislature makes them entitled to welfare. The state legislature is an enabler of unemployed and welfare citizens, they love having Illinois citizens dependent upon the nanny state govt; its vote buying The preamble to the Illinois Constitution states in part, govt is created: “in order to provide for the health, safety and welfare of the people”. Please explain how encouraging recreational dope smoking that limits job opportunities for good paying jobs is for the health & welfare of the people. This legal recreational dope law is pure stupidity.
    Next Pritzker will want legal prostitution because he will be able to tax sex workers… the slippery slide was well greased with same-sex marriage

  3. If you think that was bad, read about the “social equity” criteria. It literally is if you were a drug dealer and have drug convictions, the state’s going to reward you with a possible license and loan. These are/ or were actual drug dealers who dealt anything, but took plea deals on marijuana. What a way to reward the law abiding.

  4. Absolutely terrifying to see these numbers and realize how many of our neighbors are using pot to get inebriated. How many of them are on our highways, on job sites, working with children, or in the Illinois General Assembly?
    In the 1980’s we were inundated with messages of “just say no” to drugs. Public service announcements made the dangers real. As a result, perception of risk went up and drug use went down.
    We’ve completely flipped the script now. Our government officials are celebrating marijuana as no big deal. First, they called marijuana “medicine.” Now, they call it “recreational.” Do you know of any other drug that’s used for both medicine and recreation? The hoax has worked.
    As a result, the perception of risk plummets, drug use (and addictions) will climb. So too will costs to society.