After lawsuits and lengthy delays, Illinois is finally set to award 185 new cannabis dispensary licenses.
Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s office announced July 15 that a series of lotteries to award the licenses are planned for later this month and August, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. State officials have also notified the preliminary winners of 213 cultivation, infuser and transporter licenses, which were awarded to social equity applicants, according to the news outlet.
Seventy-five retail licenses were initially announced in May 2020, and 110 new licenses were created this past spring.
The 110 new licenses will be doled out first in two lotteries on July 29 and Aug. 5 that will award 55 licenses in each round, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. The July 29 lottery will be for social equity applicants who previously received 85% of a total of 250 points on the state’s scoring scale, and the Aug. 5 lottery will be for applicants who qualify for “Social Equity Justice Involved” status, which gives licensing priority to those who live in an area disproportionately impacted by the war on drugs or who have past arrests for cannabis-related offenses.
A third and final lottery will be held Aug. 19 to award the original 75 dispensary licenses, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.