Newly released documents show former Illinois Governor Pat Quinn received recommendations on which businesses should receive lucrative medical marijuana licenses but did not act on them before leaving office.
Governor Bruce Rauner's administration released the material to The Associated Press and other news organizations in response to Freedom of Information Act requests. A Rauner spokesman says aides will review the evaluation process and forward their findings to the attorney general. Quinn's administration had said he would issue the licenses by the end of last year. A Quinn spokesman said Monday that the former administration made ``substantial progress'' in evaluating applications but decided to hand it over to Rauner for ``proper review.''
According to documents released by Governor Rauner’s office there were two applications for Medical Marijuana dispensaries in State Police District 13 which includes Jackson, Perry, Franklin, Williamson, Jefferson, Randolph and Washington counties. Those applications were made by Terra Herbal Health LLC. The Secretary of State’s office lists Terra Herbal’s principal office in St. Louis. The other application is by Kirkwood Pharmacy Group of Du Quoin. According to the recommendation former Governor Quinn received, Terra Herbal was ranked first to receive a dispensary license for state police District 13.
The Kirkwood Pharmacy Group was the only applicant for dispensary licenses in two other state police districts in southern Illinois. Those are District 19 which includes Edwards, Gallatin, Hamilton, Saline, Wabash, Wayne, and White counties; and in District 22 which includes Alexander, Hardin, Johnson, Massac, Pope, Pulaski and Union counties.
The state documents released by Governor Rauner’s office also includes what appears to be an announcement on cultivation licenses. In southern Illinois it appears the license recipient for state police District 13 would have been IESO, LLC if former Governor Quinn would have acted before leaving office. According to records on file with the Secretary of State’s office, IESO, LLC is based in Decatur. For District 19 it appears Ataraxia, LLC would have been the recipient. Ataraxia is based out of the Chicago area and includes seven different LLC’s. In District 22, one document indicates the selection process is ongoing. However, another document lists Wellness Group Pharms, LLC as the ranking application for the cultivation license. Wellness Group Pharms is based out of Lake Forest according to records on file with the state.
More information released to the Associated Press on the Quinn administration's evaluation and scoring for medical marijuana dispensary licenses is available here. A list of top-scoring applicants for marijuana cultivation licenses is available here.