ILLINOIS: Vegetables, flowers and herbs grow in rows of green at Robert Boyce’s greenhouses in Lake Zurich — but what he’d really like to grow is marijuana.
Boyce, a horticulturist and landscape design architect, has run Natural Environments Greenhouses and Nursery and a florist shop for many years. He’s done work for the Chicago Botanic Garden and several Chicago-area public parks.
Yet none of that is enough to qualify for a license to grow pot under the new state law allowing medical marijuana, for which having a green thumb may not be as important as having lot of green to put up.
Under the proposed rules for the new law, Boyce and other would-be pot cultivators need a $2 million surety bond, $250,000 in liquid assets, $25,000 for an application fee, $200,000 for a permit fee and an approved site. The greenhouses he runs wouldn’t qualify because they’re next to a day camp for kids — one of many siting restrictions that also prohibit growing pot near schools and residential areas.