KPMG, a global accounting firm, was awarded two no-bid contracts to grade firms applying to open new cannabis businesses In Illinois. According to the Chicago Sun-times, the regulation contract totaled nearly $7 million. However, the process has hit a standstill because of the firm’s ban on travel during the e COVID-19 pandemic and a contract provision that requires applications to be picked by hand. Officials argue their decision to go with an out-of-state firm like KPMG was to prevent insiders from getting a leg up in the process but, some local advocates believe the current delays could lengthen the head start already given to the existing clout-heavy pot firms.

– Tom Schuba, Chicago Sun-Times, 07/26/2020 8:00:00 PM

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