Recreational Cannabis

The State of Illinois has approved the possession and use of cannabis for recreational purposes for adults over 21 years old in all Illinois communities beginning on January 1, 2020.  

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What regulations were approved for recreational dispensaries?

On October 21, 2019, the Buffalo Grove Village Board approved zoning regulations pertaining to recreational cannabis dispensaries, which could potentially be located in the Village. This action follows the State of Illinois’ approval of the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act (CRTA), which will go into effect January 1, 2020 and allows for the use and personal possession of recreational cannabis for individuals 21 years of age and older. Key points of the approved Buffalo Grove Village Ordinance include:

  • No more than two recreational dispensaries will be allowed in the Village.

  • All owners of cannabis dispensaries who wish to open and operate in Buffalo Grove will be required to go through a public hearing process and obtain special use approval from the Village.

  • Recreational dispensaries can be located only in certain business districts that have frontages on Milwaukee Avenue, Lake Road or Dundee Road. Recreational dispensaries may also locate in the industrial districts.

  • While recreational and/or medical cannabis dispensaries will be allowed as a special use, recreational cultivation centers, craft growers, processors, infusers and cannabis transporting organizations will be prohibited.

  • A 1,000-foot buffer will be established between recreational/medical cannabis facilities and schools, daycares museums, libraries, substance abuse treatment or counseling centers. Dispensaries cannot be located in a residential area.

  • The consumption of cannabis on-site at recreational cannabis dispensaries will be strictly prohibited.

  • Access to recreational dispensaries to any individual under the age of 21 will be strictly prohibited.

While recreational cannabis will be legal starting next year, the Village does not currently have any applications on file or pending, for recreational dispensary.  The Ordinance provides the Village Board with final review and approval authority prior to the opening of any recreational cannabis dispensary. For more information, please see the press release.

How will the Village ensure recreational cannabis isn’t made available to persons under the age of 21?

Similarly to alcohol and tobacco, the Village’s Police Department will be able to conduct compliance checks at a dispensary in Buffalo Grove to ensure that they are not allowing for the underage sale. If a dispensary is located adjacent to our boundaries, but not in our community, Buffalo Grove cannot conduct the compliance checks.

Is medical cannabis permitted and available in Buffalo Grove?

Yes. The Village has an existing medical cannabis dispensary in the Industrial park. This business has been operating since 2015. To date, the facility has had no issues.

Can the Village’s existing medical dispensary, PDI Medical, begin selling recreational cannabis in Buffalo Grove on January 1, 2020?  No. PDI Medical and their parent company, Cresco Labs, cannot begin selling recreational cannabis in Buffalo Grove until they obtain their special use by the Village.

PDI has submitted special use application.  The public hearing has yet to be scheduled.  

Can a recreational cannabis dispensary locate in my neighborhood?

No. Recreational cannabis dispensaries cannot be located in an area zoned for residential.

What are the requirements to possess recreational cannabis in a home with persons under the age of 21?

Parents or guardians are responsible to ensure that anyone under the age of 21 cannot have access to recreational cannabis within their private property.

Can people drive under the influence of cannabis in Buffalo Grove?

No. Driving under the influence of cannabis remains illegal, and law enforcement officials may use validated standardized field sobriety tests approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. At this time, there is no approved roadside chemical tests.

If the Village had “opted-out” of the sale of recreational cannabis, would  the possession and consumption of recreational cannabis been considered illegal in Buffalo Grove?

No. The Village cannot prohibit the possession and use of cannabis for recreational purposes by adults 21 years of age or older.

Can recreational cannabis be consumed in parks or other public places?

No. Use of recreational cannabis is prohibited in:

  • Any public place, such as streets or parks

  • In any motor vehicle

  • On school grounds, with the exception of medical users

  • Near someone under the age of 21

  • Near an on-duty school bus driver, police officer, firefighter or corrections office

Can recreational cannabis be grown in someone’s private residence or home?

No. Pursuant to State Law, home grow for recreational cannabis is prohibited. However, home grow is authorized for medical cannabis program participants only, is limited to five plants in their residence, and subject to specified restrictions.

For more information contact the Village at info@vbg.org or 847-459-2500.



General Information 
Frequently Asked Questions 




Latest Update
November 1, 2019

On October 21st, the Village Board approved an ordinance regarding recreational cannabis in the Village. View the meeting materials at the
 Board Meeting Agenda and Minutes Webpage 

View for the Village's press release regarding the Village Board's decision on October 21st.  

PDI Medical, and their parent company, Cresco Labs, have submitted a special use application and the Village Board will be having a pre-application discussion at the Board Meeting on November 4th. View the meeting materials at the Board Meeting Agenda and Minutes Webpage.

For more information email the Village at info@vbg.org  

Key Facts 

  • Effective 1/1/2020, possession and use of cannabis for recreational purposes for adults over 21 years old becomes legal in Illinois. 
  • Consumption of cannabis is prohibited in public places.
  • Only State-licensed businesses will be able to sell cannabis. 
  • Any person, business, public entity, or landlord may prohibit the use of cannabis on private property, per the state law.