Milan marijuana dispensary hurrying to finish construction by January

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Milan, Ill. (KWQC) - In less than a month, people 21 and over will be able to buy recreational marijuana in Illinois.

Nature's Treatment in Milan is racing against the clock to prepare for the new law that legalizes recreational marijuana in Illinois. (KWQC)

A Milan business is racing against the clock to prepare for that new law that comes along with the new year.

Nature’s Treatment is advertising legally being able to buy recreational marijuana in Illinois, but its not ready to sell it yet.

It’s expanding its building by twice its size to sell recreational marijuana.

Nature’s Treatment Manager Shannon Ballegeer said they started out only selling medical marijuana in 2016.

“We only had a couple hundred patients. We weren’t servicing a large amount of people like we are now,” Ballegeer said. “Now we are up over 1,400 patients just on the medical side. Obviously we know that number will be huge for the recreational buyers.”

Nature’s Treatment is betting on it. Its new recreational addition will cost them over $1 million.

“There will be a check in desk up front,” she said. “From there we will check their ID and go through the rules and everything of the program. And then they will enter the sales door.”

In that room, customers will meet with a consultant at the counter to go over the type of products.

“We started working on blueprints as soon as the bill was signed,” Ballegeer said. “That took a little while to put into effect. I want to say construction started in September.”

“We’re moving as quickly as we possibly can. We actually did just receive our license to dispense recreational cannabis. So we are licensed to do so. But we’d really like to use this side of the building to make that happen.”

The new addition also includes a vault storage room for employees and a garage where products will be dropped off.

“I have faith that we will be done,” Ballegeer said. “I think the biggest thing is getting the state here for the inspection.”

Once it is approved by the state of Illinois, Ballegeer said they’ll be ready to sell recreational marijuana --- even to Iowans.

“We can accept their ID as long as its valid and as long as they are 21 and up. They just can’t take anything that they purchase back across the border.”

If Iowans do decide to bring it back from across the border, that can result in a $625 fine or even jail time.

Officials say there won’t be a grace period once the new law takes effect in Illinois on January 1, 2020.