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Adult Use Cannabis Craft Growers FAQ

This information is provided as a courtesy of the
Illinois Department of Agriculture
for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice.

 

When will the Craft Grower application be available? 

Applications for Craft Grower Licenses were made available on January 7, 2020 on the Department's website.

 

When will the application be due? 

Applications for a Craft Grower License may be submitted to the Department beginning February 14, 2020 and are due no later than March 16, 2020.

 

When will Craft Grower licenses be awarded?

Craft Grower licenses will be awarded on or before July 1, 2020.

 

How many Craft Grower licenses are available?

The Department will award up to 40 Craft Grower Licenses on or before July 1, 2020. By December 21, 2021, the Department of Agriculture shall issue up to 60 additional Craft Grower licenses.

 

How will licenses be selected?

Applicants for a Craft Grower license will be ranked using the following scale:

  • Suitability of the Proposed Facility (75 points)
  • Suitability of Employee Training Plan (50 points)
  • Security Plan and Recordkeeping (145 points)
  • Cultivation Plan (75 points)
  • Product Safety and Labeling Plan (95 points)
  • Business Plan and Services to be Offered (110 points)
  • Status as a Social Equity Applicant (200 points)
  • Labor and Employment Practices (20 points)
  • Environmental Plan (20 points)
  • Illinois Owner (90 points)
  • Status as a Veteran (20 points)
  • Diversity Plan (100 points)

    Total: 1000 points
     

 

What are the fees for a Craft Grower license? 

Applicants for a Craft Grower license will pay a non-refundable $5,000 application fee. Should an applicant be awarded a license, the fee for a Craft Grower License is $40,000. Qualified social equity applicants will pay 50% of those fees.

 
How many Craft Grower licenses can I have?

Any person or entity awarded a license pursuant to the initial application period shall only hold one craft grower license.

By December 21, 2021, the Department of Agriculture shall issue up to 60 additional craft grower licenses. Any person or entity awarded a license during this second application period shall not hold more than two craft grower licenses.

After January 1, 2022, the Department of Agriculture may by rule modify or raise the number of craft grower licenses and modify or change the licensing application process to reduce or eliminate barriers. At no time may the number of craft grower licenses exceed 150. Any person or entity awarded a license after January 1, 2022, shall not hold more than 3 craft grower licenses.


What is a social equity applicant?

A Social Equity Applicant means an applicant this is an Illinois resident that meets the one of the following criteria: 

  • The applicant has at least 51% ownership and control by one or more individuals who have resided for at least 5 of the preceding 10 years in a Disproportionately Impacted Area;
  • The applicant has at least 51% ownership and control by one or more individuals who:
    • Have been arrested for, convicted of, or adjudicated delinquent for any offense that is eligible for expungement under the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act*; or
    • Is a member of an impacted family**;
  • The applicant has at least 10 full-time employees and at least 51% of whom:
    • Currently reside in a Disproportionately Impacted Area; or
    • Have been arrested for, convicted of, or adjudicated delinquent for any offense that is eligible for expungement under the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act or a member of an impacted family. 

* "Offenses eligible for expungement for expungement under the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act include possession of cannabis up to 500g or the manufacturing and delivery of up to 30g of cannabis.

**"Member of impacted family" means an individual who has a parent, legal guardian, child, spouse, or dependent, or was a dependent of an individual who, prior to the effective date of the Act, was arrested for, convicted of, or adjudicated delinquent for any offense that is eligible for expungement under the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act.
 

Please see the Department's Social Equity Applicant Frequently Asked Questions for further details.

What is a principal officer and what are the requirements to be a principal officer?
A "Principal Officer" includes:

  • A cannabis business establishment applicant or licensed cannabis business establishment's board member, owner with more than 1% interest of the total cannabis business establishment or more than 5% interest of the total cannabis business establishment of a publicly traded company;
     
  • President, vice president, secretary, treasurer, partner, officer, member, manager member, or person with a profit sharing, financial interest, or revenue sharing arrangement.
     
  • The definition includes a person with authority to control the cannabis business establishment, a person who assumes responsibility for the debts of the cannabis business establishment, and a person who is further defined in the Act.

A principal officer must be at least 21 years of age and must not be convicted of an offense that would impair the person's ability to engage in the practice of owning a Craft Grower. The Department shall determine whether an offense would impair the person's ability by considering the following factors:
 
  • The lack of a direct relation of the offense for which the applicant was previously convicted to the duties, functions, and responsibilities of the position of being a principal officer;
  • Whether five years since a felony conviction or three years since release from confinement for the conviction, whichever is later, have passed without a subsequent conviction;
  • If the applicant was previously licensed or employed in any state, the lack of prior misconduct arising from or related to the person's position as the owner or employee of a cannabis business;
  • The age of the person at the time of the criminal offense;
  • Successful completion of a sentence and, for applicants serving a term of parole or probation, a progress report provided by the applicant's probation or parole officer that documents the applicant's compliance with conditions and supervision;
  • Evidence of the applicant's present fitness and professional character;
  • Evidence of rehabilitation or rehabilitative effort during or after incarceration, or during or after a term of supervision, including, but not limited to, a certificate of good conduct under Section 5- 5.5-25 of the Unified Code of Corrections or certificate of relief from disabilities under Section 4-5.5-10 of the Unified Code of Corrections; and
  • Any other mitigating factors that contribute to the applicant's potential and current ability to perform the duties of a principal officer.


Will the names of the persons or entities holding the licenses be publicized?

Yes, the identities of the persons or entities awarded licenses will be posted by the Department.