How quickly medical marijuana can be made available in Illinois will depend on a man who was against the law in the first place. The applications for cultivation centers weren’t approved before Gov. Bruce Rauner was sworn into office. While Rauner said during his campaign he would vetoed the state’s medical marijuana law, the sponsor of that legislation, State Rep. Lou Lang (D-Skokie), will try to talk him out of putting the old applications into the trash and starting from scratch.
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“I would try to hold my breath until I turn blue, but he’d probably outwait me,” Lang said. “I’m hopeful he won’t do that. He certainly can do that.”
Lang had been preaching patience to those waiting for medical marijuana, but says the lack of action by ex-Gov. Pat Quinn before he left office “crossed the line.” The best-case scenario now is Rauner quickly approves the licenses, and cultivators can have marijuana ready to be distributed by late spring.
Even that timeline will limit a four-year pilot program to about 30 months, so Lang is preparing legislation to mark the beginning of the four years from the time the first licenses are issued.