Bill creating new marijuana dispensary licenses clears House – The Southern

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Gov. J. B. Pritzker signs a bill in June 2019 that legalizes adult-use cannabis in the state of Illinois at Sankofa Cultural Arts and Business Center in Chicago.

Associated Press RAYMON TRONCOSO Capitol News Illinois

SPRINGFIELD — Legislation revamping the state’s system for awarding marijuana dispensary licenses passed the House on Tuesday.

The measure is meant to address shortcomings in the 2019 Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act, specifically in regard to a license lottery that was delayed by the pandemic, controversy and legal disputes for over a year.

Amendments to House Bill 1443, sponsored by Chicago Democratic Rep. La Shawn Ford, would create two new marijuana dispensary lotteries offering 55 licenses each while addressing lingering concerns regarding the original 75 licenses established in the 2019 law.

It passed the House in a 70-33 vote with bipartisan support, but also bipartisan opposition. Democratic Rep. Carol Ammons, of Urbana questioned whether his legislation accomplished the social equity spirit of the initial marijuana legalization legislation.

“My dispensaries in Champaign-Urbana can be owned by a group from other states, taking the resources from Champaign-Urbana to

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