The new draft rules include changes from the Illinois Department
of Agriculture, the Illinois Department of Financial and
Professional Regulation, the Illinois Department of Public Health,
and the Illinois Department of Revenue and will be available for an
additional 45 days of public comment until the General Assembly's
Joint Committee on Administrative Rules begins its review.
The draft proposed rules have already been posted and available
for comment on the Medical Cannabis Pilot Program website at
www.mcpp.illinois.gov for more than 70 days. Over the past several
months, the state has heard from people with chronic illnesses,
business entrepreneurs, medical cannabis advocates, municipalities
and others commenting on the draft proposed rules.
"We've ensured a transparent rule-making process by offering the
public a chance to weigh in on the proposed medical cannabis rules,
even before seeking legislative approval," said Bob Morgan, general
counsel for the Illinois Department of Public Health and statewide
program coordinator. "The rules make sure Illinois has the nation's
strictest safeguards to prevent abuse, while offering relief and
help to eligible patients to ease their suffering."
"I applaud all four state agencies for their hard work in
creating draft rules that form the basis for the best medical
marijuana system in America," said Rep. Lou Lang, D-Skokie, who
sponsored the legislation. "I am pleased with the direction we are
The following changes have been incorporated into the proposed
rules filed April 18.
While the act calls for one cultivation center in each of the 22
Illinois State Police districts statewide, District 15 is the
Illinois Tollway system. Therefore, the proposed rules reflect that
only 21 cultivation center licenses will be issued at this time. One
entity can be awarded licenses for up to three cultivation centers.
The Illinois Department of Agriculture will inspect each facility
at least weekly, and live security camera video will feed to IDOA
and to the Illinois State Police.
The single-stage application process includes a $25,000
nonrefundable application fee, proof of $500,000 in liquid assets
and documentation satisfying selection and optional bonus criteria.
Applications will be scored by a team selected by IDOA.
The rules define residential zoning areas to address the
dispensary location concerns of some cities and counties. The
Department of Financial and Professional Regulation will permit up
to 60 dispensaries around the state. One entity can receive permits
in up to five districts.
The two-stage application process includes a $5,000 nonrefundable
application fee, proof of $400,000 in liquid assets and
documentation satisfying selection and optional bonus criteria.
Applications will be scored by a team selected by IDFPR.
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Patients and caregivers
Reduced registration fees are $100 for eligible patients; $50 for
eligible patients on Social Security Insurance and Social Security
Disability Insurance, as well as veterans; and $25 for caregivers.
Previous language regarding firearm owners' identification cards
and medical cannabis identification cards has been removed. The
state is continuing to examine how the state's medical cannabis and
firearm laws may interact with federal firearm laws.
An expanded 15-member Medical Cannabis Advisory Committee
— which adds qualifying patients, including a veteran; a health care
provider with general practice experience; and nurses or nurse
practitioners with experience working with medical cannabis patients
— will review petitions to recommend adding qualifying medical
conditions twice each year.
The rules clarify physician-written certification language and
pre-operation cultivation center inspections.
- Cultivators will pay a 7 percent privilege tax on sales to
dispensaries, and patients and caregivers will pay a 1 percent sales
Sandy Champion, wife of veteran Jim Champion of the 101st
Airborne, who was struck with multiple sclerosis, said the state has
worked hard and diligently in drafting the proposed rules.
"Jim and I are pleased with the changes to the proposed rules,
especially with the reduction in patient and caregiver fees, and the
addition of veterans," Sandy Champion said. "We are also pleased
that the Medical Cannabis Advisory Committee has been expanded to
include more patients, as well as a veteran."
"While the Marijuana Policy Project will continue to suggest
comments and changes to improve the pilot program, we applaud
several significant improvements in the departments' proposed rules,
including a lower application fee for seriously ill patients," said
Chris Lindsey, a legislative analyst with the Marijuana Policy
The Joint Committee on Administrative Rules follows a two-step
process that generally lasts for a minimum of 90 days. Both the
general public and the General Assembly, through the JCAR, have the
chance to offer input prior to the rules being adoption. For more
information on the
JCAR rule-making process (PDF), visit
View the rules at www.mcpp.illinois.gov.
Illinois Department of Public
Health file received from the
Illinois Office of Communication and Information]