State Fairgrounds - P.O. Box 19281 - Springfield, IL 62794-9281 - 217/782-2172 - TDD 217/524-6858 - Fax 217/785-4505

Medical Cannabis Pilot Program


The Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act was signed by Governor Quinn on August 1, 2013, and went into effect on January 1, 2014. The Department of Agriculture is charged with registering and regulating up to 22 cultivation centers allowed in the law. The proposed rules have been filed with the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR) for review and public comment. The rules may be found on the site by clicking on the Illinois Register link.  The rules are at page 8069 of Issue 16, April 18, 2014 edition.  The JCAR review and approval process will then follow state law, including public comment, and typically will take 3 or 4 months. The Department will not accept applications for a cultivation center license until the rules are final, most likely during the fall of 2014. Further information on the Act (410 ILCS 130), including the full text can be found on the Illinois General Assembly website (  Please visit the Medical Cannabis Pilot Program website for past drafts of the rules and program updates.

Comments and suggested changes to the proposed rules are welcome and encouraged. When commenting on the rules, please include the page number and section number of the rule upon which you are commenting.

Comments may be submitted by mail to:

Illinois Department of Agriculture
State Fairgrounds
P.O. Box 19281
Springfield, IL 62794-9281

Comments may also be submitted to the Department by email to

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the status of the legislation?
    1. HB 1 (Public Act 98-0122) passed both chambers on May 17, 2013.
    2. The Governor signed the legislation on August 1, 2013.
    3. The Act can be found in the Illinois Compiled Statutes at 410 ILCS 130.
  2. When can I apply for a cultivation center registration permit?
    1. The legislation has an effective date of January 1, 2014.
    2. The Department has filed proposed rules with the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR).
    3. Only after JCAR approves administrative rules will the application be made available. Please continue to monitor the Department’s website.
  3. Can you advise how the rule making process works?
    1. For information on how the rule making process works, please visit JCAR’s website:
    2. The proposed rules have been filed with JCAR and the first notice period has begun, any comments on the rules must be made through the public comment process outlined in the notice. Ex parte communications with the Department will be reported to the Executive Ethics Commission.
  4. Does the department have sample application guidelines that I could look at?
    1. No. The Act contains guidance on what the Department should consider when developing the program and applications, but left a majority of the program to the discretion of the Department to develop through the rule making process.
    2. The Department is researching similar programs in other states and gathering information on how programs in those states are administered.
  5. Who will be administering the registration for the program?
    1. The Department of Agriculture will be awarding up to 22 permits to grow and cultivate.
    2. The Department of Financial and Professional Regulation will be issuing up to 60 permits to dispense.
    3. The Department of Public Health will be in charge of the patient registry.
  6. Can I put my name on a list of individuals interested in growing cannabis?
    1. The Department is NOT taking names at this time.
  7. Is it currently legal to grow medical cannabis?
    1. No, it is not legal at this time for anyone within the State of Illinois to be growing cannabis for any purpose.
  8. Will I be able to grow cannabis at home when the program is implemented?
    1. No, unlike some other states, the Act does not permit home-grow of cannabis. Only a registered cultivation center will be allowed to grow medical cannabis.
  9. When will I be able to apply for a permit?
    1. Please continue to monitor the Department’s website. Once the rules are adopted, more detailed information will be available.
  10. Where can I get a copy of the Act?
    1. You can print off a copy of the Act (410 ILCS 130) from the Illinois General Assembly’s website at:


If you have comments, suggestions or more detailed inquiries for the Department of Agriculture, please direct them to

Related Links

Further information about the Act and the roles of the Department of Public Health and the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation may be found at