Photo Credit: OCC Newspaper
Over the years, cannabis- marijuana has become mainstream due to,legalized cannabis in various states. One of those states is Illinois, or as those who are from that state say: “Land of Lincoln.” Cannabis- marijuana has been legal in the state of Illinois for many years in some way, but many may still not not understand what legal means. If you have questions like: how much can I buy at one time? Can I have cannabis on me without trouble? Can I smoke in public?, then this piece is for you. As always- this is just a crack in the door to your own research. You should go beyond this article to confirm all cannabis regulations in Illinois.
When did cannabis- marijuana become legal in Illinois?
The law that legalized cannabis- marijuana in Illinois was passed on May 31st, 2019, signed on June 25th, 2019, by Gov. J.B. Pritzker, and on January 1st, 2020, sales by licensed distributors were allowed. Also, advertisements from the dispensaries became allowed. This doesn’t mean that it can be smoked just anywhere though. The stipulations for using cannabis in Illinois as it was stated in state law:
- Can’t smoke in public such as parks or streets,
- Cannot consume in any mode of transportation i.e., bus, train, or car.
- Can’t smoke on school grounds (there’s an exception for medical users),
- Cannot consume around any courthouse, near an on-duty police officer, firefighters or those who work for the penal system such as prison or jail guards.
The law allows colleges to enact a ban of cannabis-marijuana usage on their grounds, anyone who runs an apartment complex or is a landlord that rents out their property, can put in their contracts that there will be no cannabis use on or in their rentals. Employers have the option to have a no-tolerance cannabis policy, for their potential or current employees.
With these state laws allowing these types of workplace policies, employers can terminate or deny employment for having a failed drug test. A great thing that came from legalization, expungement for those non violent, cannabis- marijuana convictions.
How much cannabis- marijuana can be purchased from a dispensary in Illinois?
Since the state of Illinois legalized marijuana for adult- use, the state government did put a regulation for the purchase of cannabis for one person. You can have up to 30 mgs of cannabis flower for consumption, in an infused product you can have up to 500 mg of THC and 5 grams of cannabis concentrates such as: vapes, oils, hashish, and tinctures, for those who are 21 years or older.
Also, the people who are visiting the state, with no address as a resident, and no Illinois ID, can only purchase half of what someone that lives in Illinois can:15 mgs of dried leaf cannabis, 250 mg of THC, and 2.5 grams of cannabis concentrate. THC under the compassionate usage for medical patients, allows consumption of cannabis- marijuana, and the growing of up to 5 plants for personal consumption.
What are the state cannabis laws regarding those who are under 21?
Those who are under the age of 21, are unable to purchase cannabis legally. If under 21 with cannabis- marijuana, one can be charged with possession by a minor. The penalty for trying to purchase cannabis- marijuana as a minor is license suspension and a potential class A misdemeanor, which can result in jail up to 1 year with fines. The dispensaries who complete a purchase from a minor, can potentially lose their licensing rights and have a prison sentence from 2-5 years for the individual who sold to the minor, plus fines that are imposed by the state.
For those with gun permits and those that consume cannabis- marijuana, according to the Illinois State Police: “we will not revoke anyone’s permit, due to their usage of marijuana, however, if they’re a habitual user of narcotics, they will not be able to get a permit to have a gun.” Also, when asked what about those who violate the Cannabis Regulation and Tax act that also have gun permits, they again said, “we will revoke and deny the individuals FOID application.”
Written by: Terry Byas
Edited by: Veronica Castillo
Korasana (with partner Zero Point Extractions)
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