The challenges of legalizing marijuana - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

The challenges of legalizing marijuana

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WILLIAMSON COUNTY (WSIL) -- Local law officials say the legalization of marijuana will be a challenge for law enforcement.

Illinois residents 21 and older will legally be able to purchase up to 30 grams of cannabis beginning January 1, 2020.

The new law will also mean 700,000 records are eligible for expungement for inmates who are currently incarcerated for a cannabis conviction.

But Williamson County State Attorney Brandon Zanotti tells News 3 that the new law is more complicated than that, "I think another thing people need to know is it's not just unlimited possession here. There's still schedules of possessions that can even get you up to a felony."

Chief Deputy Scott McCabe, from the Williamson County Sheriff's Office tells News 3 people should view this law as similar to the one dealing with alcohol: drinking is legal, but driving under the influence is a crime. 

Officials say marijuana is still a drug that could be dangerous. With the new law, you still can not use or have it in hands-reach while driving. The officers can ticket you if caught.

Illinois is the first state to legalize marijuana directly through the legislature and 11th state to legalize recreational marijuana.

The new law starts January 1, 2020.

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