Illinois Awards $45M In Cannabis Tax-Funded Grants To Support Community Reinvestment

Zinger Key Points
  • “We’re proud to use cannabis revenue to directly support community-based organizations," says Gov. J.B. Pritzker.
  • 25% of Illinois tax revenue generated from cannabis sales must support communities that are in economic distress.

On Thursday, Illinois officials announced - through the Restore, Reinvest, and Renew (R3) program - the awarding of $45 million in grants funded by marijuana tax revenue to support community reinvestment in areas “hardest hit by the failed war on drugs,” reported Marijuana Moment on June 24.

The Reach Of Cannabis Tax Revenue: Illinois’s adult-use cannabis legalization law established the R3 Program. This is the second round of funding that’s being made available through the state.

llinois first announced that applications for this grant round were open in December 2021.

Illinois, by awarding this amount of grant money, will support 148 programs statewide operating on shoestring budgets in designated socioeconomically disadvantaged communities.

“A modern and equitable cannabis industry requires equity, opportunity, and a robust investment in righting the wrongs of the war on drugs,” Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) said in a press release.

“That means investing in our underserved communities who’ve gone far too long without the funding and resources they need and deserve to heal and prosper.

“We’re proud to use cannabis revenue to directly support community-based organizations invested in creating opportunity,” he added.

The Grant Recipients: Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority (ICJIA) received 512 completed submissions for R3 grants. Among the grant recipients are the Illinois Prison Project, Illinois Equity Staffing LLC, Lifehouse Recovery Organization, Resilience Partners NFP and Women in Need Recover, which received about $1.5 million each.

Those organizations that received grants through the initial R3 round - in January 2021 - would be able to renew their funding for another year to ensure they can continue to provide services in their communities.

“Illinois is showing what working to repair the damage that plagues our communities looks like by continuing to build the infrastructure that addresses decades of disinvestment, excessive incarceration, and trauma,” said Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton (D). “As a tool that connects communities to the resources they need in an equitable and sustainable way, R3 is at the core of our efforts to bring restorative and healing solutions to people and regions that have been unheard and underserved for far too long.”

What Does Illinois Recreational Marijuana Law Say About Social Justice? According to Illinois recreational marijuana law, 25% of tax revenue generated from cannabis sales must support communities that are in economic distress, experience high rates of violence, and have been disproportionately affected by the criminalization of drugs.

"The benefits of adult-use legalization are many: much-needed tax revenue, regulation to ensure safe products, criminal justice reforms to counteract the failed war on drugs, and an alternative to opioids and alcohol," Ben Kovler, CEO of Green Thumb Industries Inc GTBIF told Benzinga when Illinois became the 11th state to legalize recreational marijuana.

Photo By Ellery Sterling On Unsplash.

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Posted In: CannabisGovernmentRegulationsPoliticsMarketsMediaGeneralIllinoisIllinois cannabisJ.B. PritzkerJuliana StrattonMarijuana Moment
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