Chicago-- Illinois has become the 20th state to legalize medical marijuana with some of the strictest standards nationwide. But the proposal will take many months to set into motion because of complex rules and regulations.
No one knows for sure when medical marijuana will be available for purchase in Illinois.
The bill's sponsor and experts estimate it will take several months to more than a year after the law takes effect Jan. 1. That's because three state agencies have to come up with rules that have to be approved by a legislative committee.
The state will set up 22 so-called cultivation centers.
Gov. Pat Quinn's office estimates medical marijuana will also create hundreds of jobs.
The National Cannabis Industry Association has planned a symposium this month for potential investors and businesses.