Cannabis in Illinois

CPD Details What You Should Know About Legal Weed Come Jan. 1

The video, posted Wednesday, quickly garnered hundreds of comments and shares with more than 48,000 views by Thursday morning

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Legal weed is coming to Illinois but what exactly will be “legal” in the state? Chicago police put out an answer to that question this week.

The department posted a video to social media with “things you should know” as recreational cannabis is legalized Jan. 1. The video, posted Wednesday, quickly garnered hundreds of comments and shares with more than 48,000 views by Thursday morning.

Here’s how they broke it down:

How much weed can you have?

Under the new law, adults 21 and older will be able to legally purchase and possess up to 30 grams cannabis leaf, 5 grams of cannabis concentrate or 500 milligrams of cannabis-infused product.

Where can you buy it?

The only place you can legally purchase weed from is at authorized licensed businesses. Private sales are still illegal, police said.

Growing cannabis also remains illegal except for those with medical marijuana cards.

Where can you smoke it and where can’t you smoke it?

You can legally consume weed in private residences and designated areas within licensed businesses.

One important reminder the department emphasized, however, is that landlords and property owners can still ban use and consumption within their property.

You cannot smoke on school grounds, in motor vehicles, on Chicago Transit Authority property, in restaurants and bars or in public places, including streets, sidewalks, parks and playgrounds and even front porches.

Marijuana should be placed in a special sealed package when being transported in vehicles.

You can legally consume weed in private residences and designated areas within licensed businesses.

One important reminder the department emphasized, however, is that landlords and property owners can still ban use and consumption within their property.

You cannot smoke on school grounds, in motor vehicles, on Chicago Transit Authority property, in restaurants and bars or in public places, including streets, sidewalks, parks and playgrounds and even front porches.

The city's mayor and interm police Supt. Charlie Beck said in a later statement, however, that while state law prohibits cannabis consumption in a "public place," CPD "recognizes that an individual using cannabis in their own backyard or balcony poses no direct threat to public safety, and no resident should be arrested or ticketed solely for such a scenario." 

"Any characterization to the contrary is simply wrong. Over the past several months and throughout December, all 13,000 of Chicago's police officers are being trained on the reformed cannabis enforcement laws, including how they should use discretion of their enforcement powers to educate residents on the new legalization laws, rather than issuing tickets as a default response," the statement read. 

Marijuana should be placed in a special sealed package when being transported in vehicles.

What happens if you violate the rules?

Police say violations will result in citations and could be subject to “other enforcement action.”

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