* Illinois being Illinois, one thing you have to keep in mind when reading stories like this (as well-researched as it appears to be), is whether companies that lost out also had political connections. That’s what usually happens here…
A famed restaurateur.
An ex-Chicago police commander.
A longtime Republican Party operative.
A former Chicago Transit Authority official.
A cannabis industry insider related to a former state lawmaker.
A former director of the state agency that oversees weed dispensaries.
What do they all have in common?
They’re working together for Green Renaissance Illinois, a budding firm that was recently named a finalist in the state lottery for the next round of pot shop licenses.
That being said, the governor was likely right to order a look at the bidding process. The more I see, the more I think that KPMG’s approach was flawed or worse.
Also, the license application process to grow cannabis includes the right to appeal. The law gives dispensary applicants no such right. That’s a very real problem and the GA needs to revisit this in the fall.
* In other news…
There are no cannabis-related businesses in Elgin, but city officials hope to recruit a dispensary to the downtown with a rule change that received unanimous support from the planning and zoning commission this week.
Despite following the state’s lead and legalizing dispensaries and cultivation centers during the past six years, Elgin has not lured any medical or recreational businesses.
There have been “a lot of inquiries,” according to Mark Mylott, the city’s director of community development. But restrictions about how close such a business can be to areas where children might gather has kept the most attractive locations, including the downtown, off-limits, he said. Mylott said a dispensary could be the catalyst the downtown needs. […]
City officials want to exclude two “pocket parks” from the 250-foot distance requirement.
Our blue laws are so goofy.