Recreational Marijuana Now Legal in Illinois. Here Are The Do’s and Don’ts

By Jeremy Coumbes on January 1, 2020 at 7:00am

Governor J.B. Pritzker signed HB 1438 into law on June 25th, making Illinois the 11th state to legalize marijuana for recreational use, however many still have questions about what is or is not allowed under the new law.

Recreational marijuana usage technically became legal at midnight, however state licensed dispensaries were not allowed to open for business until 6:00 a.m. Anyone 21 years of age or older can now purchase legal marijuana from only those state approved dispensaries.

Residents of the state of Illinois can purchase or posses a maximum amount of 30 grams, or about one ounce of marijuana plant material at any time. Edibles can be purchased or possessed up to a limit of 500mg of THC, and cannabis concentrate products are limited to 5 grams. Non-residents may legally purchase half of those amounts, but are not allowed to transport any cannabis out of the state.

Illinois State Police Director Brendan Kelley says much like alcohol, when transporting marijuana in a vehicle, it needs to be kept out of reach to be in compliance with the law.

If you are going to transport it in a vehicle, it has to be reasonably inaccessible, and in a sealed, odor proof, child resistant container, and you cannot use it in a vehicle, and you cannot use it in a public place.”

Recreational marijuana may only be consumed in a private residence. Users are not allowed to partake in any public areas such as city parks or other recreational areas, and no marijuana use is allowed in areas designated for smoking tobacco products.

Local municipalities do have the freedom to determine if they will allow for consumption of marijuana on site at licensed dispensaries.

Recreational users are not permitted to grow their own plants, only medical cannabis patients are allowed to have plants at home, and are limited to no more than five plants.

There are approximately 30 dispensaries in the state that are permitted to start selling marijuana for recreational use tomorrow morning. The state will award up to 75 more licenses by May 1st and 110 additional licenses will be allowed by December 21st of 2021.

The closest dispensary locations to Morgan county residents currently are in Springfield, Grandview, Quincy and Canton Illinois.

Currently the city of Jacksonville has approved a first reading of an ordinance to allow cannabis sales in the city. The Village of South Jacksonville has had discussion on the issue, but has not had an official proposal of an ordinance for discussion at this time.