Illinois Governor JB Pritzker on Tuesday signed a bill that will legalize recreational marijuana.
The legislation is intended to regulate and license the sale, possession and consumption of marijuana. Those charged with marijuana possession under 30 grams will have their records expunged and those convicted of possessing more than that are eligible for pardon if they did not commit a violent crime. Wiping clean these possession charges could drastically improve financial opportunity and stability that many with a criminal record struggle with.
Revenue from the marijuana regulation is intended to be put back into local communities impacted by the War on Drug policies. Other portions of the tax will be dedicated to substance abuse and mental health care facilities throughout the state.
Regulating the recreational use of marijuana is expected to generate 800 million in revenue needed for many local communities and organizations while clearing past criminal records that have held many back from better opportunities in life. This makes Illinois the eleventh state to legalize recreational marijuana use, with the bill to take effect on January 1, 2020.