A Black-owned marijuana dispensary is coming to Springfield.
Chicago businessmen Brian Scruggs and Kamau Murray of Herbal Quality Control LLC on Thursday were awarded a cannabis license by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation to operate a recreational dispensary in Springfield.
The dispensary will be the first of three licenses coming to Sangamon and Menard counties as part of the state’s three-round lottery, which has a renewed focus to award licenses to minorities and those with past marijuana-related convictions due to recent legislation.
“The outcome of the original scoring process prompted a reply that the results did not meet their original goal of social equity,” said Pamela Althoff, executive director of the Cannabis Business Association of Illinois and former state senator.
“It was the entire reason why the State of Illinois had the additional lottery,” Althoff said referring to a lack of licenses being awarded to those who were historically disenfranchised as a result of past marijuana laws. The drug became legal for recreational use in Illinois in 2020.
Earlier in July, Gov. JB Pritzker signed a bill into law that changes the state’s grading system for cannabis licenses to better promote minority applicants. A study by the American Civil Liberties Union