SOUTH BELOIT - Less than four months before cannabis is set to be legalized in Illinois, the City of South Beloit could be in the running for a potential cannabis dispensary location, according to South Beloit Mayor Ted Rehl.
Rehl said MedMar, a Rockford dispensary owned by multi-state cannabis company Cresco Labs, is looking to expand potentially on land just off of Interstate 39/90 in South Beloit.
Rehl said the city is currently in negotiations, and said Thursday the municipality is hoping to have a final answer on the project this fall.
"There's a real potential for us," Rehl said. "It may or may not be good for us, but it's all about the negotiations. We will see what happens."
Rehl said Thursday company officials will not disclose the final location, currently between multiple northern municipalities including Roscoe and Machesney Park, until state permits have been approved, Rehl said.
Rehl estimated a decision by the company could come Sept. 1.
"Until they get those done, they aren't making an announcement," Rehl said.
Since the legalization bill was passed in June, South Beloit has received multiple development inquires about opening a dispensary, Rehl said.
South Beloit could impose a 3% sales tax on all cannabis sales, in line with the new legislation's guidelines for local control of future cannabis-related businesses.
MedMar was acquired by Cresco Labs in December of 2018. In April, Cresco Labs received approval from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation for the Rockford dispensary and a Chicago location. In addition to its five dispensaries in Illinois, Cresco operates three cultivation and processing facilities across the state.
Representatives for MedMar and Cresco Labs could not be reached for comment.
Cannabis will be recreationally legal Jan. 1 in Illinois.