Lincolnshire bans pot growers, recreational sales
Stores and other businesses catering to recreational marijuana users won't be welcome in Lincolnshire even though pot possession and licensed sales will be legal statewide beginning next month.
The village board on Monday approved zoning changes that effectively ban such operations. They cover businesses that grow, process, infuse, transport or sell marijuana for recreational uses.
The new zoning rules don't apply to medical marijuana dispensaries or growing centers, which are allowed in town.
Lincolnshire joins Grayslake, Lake Zurich, Libertyville, Long Grove and Vernon Hills among the Lake County communities that have adopted pot prohibitions in recent months.
Other towns, including Buffalo Grove, Mundelein and Wauconda, have either approved zoning rules for marijuana sales and growing operations or are preparing such rules.
Starting Jan. 1, anyone 21 or older in Illinois can possess up to 30 grams of cannabis, 5 grams of cannabis concentrate and 500 milligrams of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. State-licensed growing, cultivated and sales facilities will be allowed, too. But individual communities can restrict or ban cannabis-related businesses.
Lincolnshire officials previously held several public discussions on the controversial topic.
Before the board's vote Monday night at village hall, Stevenson High School junior and anti-drug activist Carson Ezell thanked the trustees for opposing recreational marijuana sales in Lincolnshire.
"It really means a lot to us," said Ezell, a Buffalo Grove resident who's a member of a substance abuse prevention club at Stevenson called Catalyst. "This is something we've been working hard to fight, not only in Lincolnshire but in a lot of communities."
Ezell noted that it's usually adults who tell kids not to use drugs. But in this case, he said, the roles are reversed.
"Here we are coming to village boards, telling them we do not want drugs coming into our communities," he said.
Vernon Hills resident Jamie Epstein, a co-sponsor of the Catalyst group and a co-founder of an anti-drug community group called the Stand Strong Coalition, also thanked the board for its stance.
The board passed the ban without opposition. Trustee Jill Raizin said she supports decriminalizing marijuana but is concerned about the effects of marijuana use on local youths, especially because Stevenson High is in town.