Illinois awarded its first licenses to sell recreational marijuana to five medical dispensaries on Thursday, even as many municipalities around the state debate whether they’ll allow pot sales.
The five shops that received licenses are peppered throughout Illinois — in Naperville, Mundelein, Joliet, Effingham and Canton — and now have the state’s permission to sell marijuana to anyone over age 21, starting Jan. 1.
Canton and Joliet have embraced recreational sales of the drug, but Naperville, Effingham and Mundelein have not decided if they will allow it. Some industry players worry about the fate of shops located in towns that end up banning recreational sales because their only customers would be consumers with medical cards.
Chicago-based Green Thumb Industries owns four of the five shops that received licenses Thursday, and has a 50% ownership stake in the fifth, The Clinic Effingham. The others include The Clinic Mundelein, Salveo Health and Wellness in Canton, and the 3C Compassionate Care Center locations in Naperville and Joliet. [Read more at Chicago Tribune]