lllinois’ Medical Marijuana Program Act goes into full effect on January 1, 2015.
It may not be the top item on your “things to deal with in the New Year” list, but if you are a small business owner or corporate manager Illinois’ new Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act may turn out to be an unwelcome part of your professional life. Originally passed in 2013, 410 ILCS 130 was partially rolled out Jan 1, 2014 but will become fully functional when the clock strikes midnight December 31. Interestingly, the Act is scheduled to be repealed in 2018, probably about the time the kinks have been worked out in terms of real world implementation.
Far short of legalizing marijuana, these statutes authorize a four year pilot program allowing the distribution of cannabis for medical use under rigidly proscribed circumstances. The Act provides for legal treatment of pain and suffering for specific debilitating afflictions, including cancer, multiple sclerosis, and HIV/AIDS, hepatitis C, Crohn’s disease, arthritis, lupus and residual limb pain. Medical cannabis can only be prescribed by a doctor of medicine or osteopathy licensed under Medical Practice Act of 1987 and the issuer is required to have a controlled substances license under Article III of the Illinois Controlled Substances Act. There are also numerous provisions regulating the cultivation and distribution of this new ancient pain remedy.