By Anthony Martinelli

Legislation to place a marijuana legalization ballot measure on this November’s general election ballot has been passed by the Illinois Senate.

The Senate voted 37 to 13 today to approve Senate Bill 2275, sending it to the House of Representatives for consideration. The measure would ask voters; “Shall the State of Illinois legalize the cultivation, manufacture, distribution, testing, and sale of marijuana and marijuana products for recreational use by adults 21 and older subject to state regulation, taxation and local ordinance?”

Unfortunately the proposal is nonbinding, meaning its passage wouldn’t actually legalize marijuana. Instead, it’s meant to give state lawmakers a gauge of how voters in the state feel about legalization. If the measure is approved by voters, it’s likely to lead to lawmakers giving the issue serious consideration during the 2019 session.

If Senate Bill 2275 is passed by the House of Representatives, it will be sent to Governor Bruce Rauner for consideration. In this instance Rauner would have the option of signing the measure into law, allowing it to become law without his signature (either approach would subsequently place the question on the November ballot), or veto it.

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