Legalizing recreational cannabis in Illinois could be a boon to economy, employment prospects

Workers, the middle class and the state economy could be the big winners if Illinois opted to legalize recreational cannabis, suggests a new study.

Taxation and regulation associated with legalizing recreational cannabis could create 23,600-plus new jobs at more than 2,600 businesses—19,500 at dispensaries, retailers and manufacturers and additional consumer demand would save or create 4,100 jobs at restaurants, stores ad other local businesses, notes the study, The Financial Impact of Legalizing Marijuana in Illinois.



The hearty injection of new jobs, at a similar rate of pay, would be about equivalent to employment at bars and other alcohol-drinking places, concludes the study from non-profit organization, Illinois Economic Policy Institute (ILEPI), and the Project for Middle Class Renewal (PMCR) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Beyond jobs, however, the study predicts that such a move would boost the state’s economy by US$1 billion annually, generate US$500 million in new state and local

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