Local Illinois city may be a part of medical marijuana boom - WPSD Local 6: Your news, weather, and sports authority

Local Illinois city may be a part of medical marijuana boom

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DU QUOIN, IL -

Medical marijuana is one step closer to becoming available in Illinois. On Tuesday, a legislative committee approved new rules for how the state is going to regulate the program.

Cities across the state are getting ready for the medical marijuana boom, including right here in the Local 6 area.

Communities such as Du Quoin have been looking for the keys to unlock economic growth. One anonymous businessman believes that the best way to do that is to take shuttered factories and reopen them as marijuana growing facilities.

City administrator Brad Meyers says he tends to agree.

"We desperately need jobs and if it could bring a handful of jobs here that would be fantastic," said Meyers.

While communities across the state are weighing the pro's and con's of the budding industry, one potential business has already expressed interest in locating a facility in the old Heartland Bakery.

David Reid lives down the street from the factory and says it could potentially save the community he loves.

"I got neighbors that are hurting and are looking for job and I would love for them to have a job," said Reid. "Even if they are just making $25,000 or $30,000 a year it would have an economic impact on the entire community."

But like many of his neighbors, he is taking a wait-and-see approach.

"I'm a little fearful that we're going to attract the wrong kind of folks that we don't want in the community," said Reid.

Du Quoin isn't the only town in Perry County that is receiving interest. The same anonymous buyer is looking at the potential of buying the old Mums building in Pickneyville as well.

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