Marijuana » Marijuana News

Michigan should look to Illinois as a model of how to expunge marijuana crimes


  • Vishesh Anand/Illinois Public Media/CC
  • Pro-pot Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker.

Illinois continues to make headway in recovering from the War on Drugs. Last week Illinois' Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker pardoned 11,000 low-level marijuana convictions. There are many more convictions eligible for expungement under Illinois law. Again Illinois has stepped to the forefront in evolving marijuana policy. It's not clear if Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has the authority to issue such a pardon, but it sure looks like a good move. Michigan is still struggling with expungement, and it's a complicated process. Pritzker just stepped forward with a pardon that cuts through all that.

Illinois is looking more and more like an example of how to do legalization. But here in the Great Lakes State? Not so much.

"Unfortunately, I think Michigan is going to become the national model of how not to roll out an adult-use program," said Michigan Cannabis Industry Association executive director Robin Schneider in a recent interview on WKAR-FM.

In the past, Schneider has bent over backward to avoid saying anything negative about the state Marijuana Regulatory Agency. From her perspective, it must have been really bad to elicit such a statement from her.

It's a new era for marijuana in Michigan. Sign up for our weekly weed newsletter, delivered every Tuesday at 4:20 p.m.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Detroit Metro Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Metro Times Press Club for as little as $5 a month.