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Kane County still waiting for state marijuana regulations

Updated: March 3, 2014 3:48PM

Medical marijuana became legal in Illinois with the New Year, and Kane County is waiting for updates from the state on the rules for cultivation and dispensing, according to county Health Department Director Barb Jeffers.

Jeffers and Zoning Enforcement Officer Mark VanKerkhoff updated the county board Tuesday regarding the waiting period for regulations, and what legalized medicinal marijuana in Kane County will look like.

The Illinois Department of Public Health regulates who can legally take medical marijuana. The Department of Agriculture regulates who can legally grow and cultivate it. The Illinois Department of Financial Regulation will handle aspects of the dispensing program.

It’s too soon to see if Kane will be home to a cultivation center, according to VanKerkhoff. There will be one cultivation center allowed in each Illinois State Police district.

Kane likely will be home to one of Illinois’ 60 allowed medical marijuana dispensing centers, he said.

The county will have the right to reasonably regulate where cultivation or dispensing centers are located in any unincorporated areas.

“Our recommendation is to wait and see how these [state] rules are written,” VanKerkhoff said.

The state will be taking the revenue from the program, and non-home rule counties such as Kane do not have the authority to set up their own sales tax, according to the state’s attorney’s office.

Employers will be able to adopt their own regulations on the use of medical marijuana. For example, Kane relies heavily on federal funding for employment. While the state legalized medical marijuana, there are still strong federal regulations that the county needs to adhere to regarding a drug free work place, or they could lose federal funding, officials said.

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