Rauner signs bill extending medical marijuana program

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — A bill extending Illinois’ medical marijuana program by 2 ½ years has been signed by Gov. Bruce Rauner.

In addition to extending the pilot program, the bill signed Thursday by Rauner adds PTSD and terminal illness to the list of qualifying conditions.

Illinois’ medical marijuana pilot program got its start under former Gov. Pat Quinn and continued under Rauner, who for more than a year resisted expanding the program beyond the original 39 conditions and diseases listed in the law.

Illinois law allows people to petition the state to add health conditions to the eligible list, but Rauner’s administration has rejected all new conditions despite the advice of an expert panel that reviewed available medical evidence.

Earlier this week, a Cook County ordered the state to add post-traumatic stress disorder to the diseases eligible for medical marijuana treatment.