The Illinois Senate just passed a bill, Senate Bill 346 (SB 346), that will take the medical marijuana pilot period to the next decade. The pilot program was to end in 2018, but if the bill becomes law, the end date will come in 2020. As we stated in our most recent post, the first step Illinois has taken toward legalized marijuana was enacting the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act in 2013 and taking effect at the start of 2014. The state legislature has correctly identified that with the delay in implementation of the provisions of that Act until 2016 due to the creation of regulations and approval of growers and suppliers, the pilot program would not be active long enough to give any sense of its success or failure.
The bill was introduced in the Senate, passing there, but it needs to next be introduced in the House for review and approval before it can be passed along to the governor’s office for passage into law. The Illinois Chamber has taken a neutral position on this bill. We will continue to keep you updated.