No. 20: Illinois Legalizes Medical Marijuana
Law goes into effect in January, with strict conditions
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 1, 2013 5:13 PM CDT
Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn speaks prior to signing a medical marijuana bill.   (Scott Eisen)

(Newser) – Illinois became the 20th state in the nation to allow the medical use of marijuana today, with Gov. Pat Quinn signing some of the nation's toughest standards into law. The measure, which takes effect Jan. 1, sets up a four-year pilot program for state-regulated dispensaries and 22 so-called cultivation centers, where the plants will be grown. Under the measure, only patients with serious illnesses or diseases will be allowed to obtain medical marijuana. The bill lists more than 30, such as cancer, muscular dystrophy, and lupus. The patients must have established relationships with a doctor and will be limited to 2.5 ounces every two weeks.

What's more, Illinois won't allow home-growing operations like more than a dozen other states do. And growing centers will have to be under 24-hour video surveillance, which is uncommon compared to other states. Nineteen other states and DC allow medical marijuana, with New Hampshire joining the club last month. (The growing acceptance of medical marijuana is starting to cause friction with the movement to legalize the drug altogether. Big profits are at stake.)

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Aug 3, 2013 12:57 PM CDT
Strictly controlled by the mob. The 5 onces per month limit is very generous since weed today only takes a couple of puffs to get you off. Now the cops won't be the only ones selling the best weed in Chicago
Aug 2, 2013 8:13 PM CDT
I can choose from a myriad of alcoholic beverages that impair people far worse. But there are strict penalties for having weed without that dastardly medical card. I will produce my license, just like the drunks do, thank you very much.
Aug 2, 2013 7:52 PM CDT
Legalizing drugs seems like how the British got China under their control with opium. We already have anough dumb asses wandering around like zombies.