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Existing
Medical Cannabis Dispensaries in Illinois May Get Licenses to Sell at Existing
Stores but Relocating to New Locations May Cause Legal Complications

Illinois’ adult-use legalization law calls for
existing medical cannabis businesses to be licensed to serve general consumers
by the beginning of 2020, an extremely quick turnaround time between the
passage of legislation and the beginning of actual commerce. Now, Crain’s Chicago Business
reports that
unforeseen issues are arising that could complicate the rollout of the state’s
adult-use industry.

Under Illinois’ adult-use cannabis law, the
state’s medical cannabis dispensaries may apply for a license to sell to
general consumers at their existing locations, as well as for an additional
storefront. However, the Crain’s report notes that the law did not consider
some shops attempting to move to new locations ahead of the opening of the
adult-use market. Some companies are running into uncertain situations where
local officials may or may not approve permits for new locations, while other
municipalities are banning adult-use cannabis businesses altogether or do not
yet have rules in place governing such commerce.

The Crain’s report quotes
state Senator Heather Stearns, co-author of Illinois’ adult-use cannabis law,
as saying that issues that have arisen since the passage of the original
measure could be addressed in future legislation. However, it appears that much
depends on local governments implementing ordinances to accommodate commercial
cannabis activities. If they do not, or are slow to do so, it is possible that
all 110 potential adult-use shops allowed under state law may not be open for
business come the start of next year.