The Senate passed a measure, known as The Marijuana Businesses Access to Banking Act, which would make it easier for marijuana businesses to do business with the federal government. The bill has the support of an all-star roster of cannabis CEOs and was unanimously approved in the Senate.
After nearly a decade of legal limbo—and the now-famous 2012 Ogden memo—it appears that the federal Obama Administration will soon give the green light to banks to provide services for marijuana businesses (and, as a result, legal marijuana consumers). The Financial Crimes Enforcement Center (FinCEN) issued the final rules for the federal banking industry in March 2014, and in July, the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) issued the Final Rules for the U.S. Marijuana Businesses Asset Forfeiture Program .
Major cannabis companies have been sounding the alarm about how the U.S. Cannabis Banking Act will affect financial transactions for cannabis businesses, reports “Banking on Marijuana” from 420 New York. The bill, part of the U.S. House of Representatives’ financial regulatory reform bill, would make it easier for banks to work with marijuana companies and regulators predict that it will help weed companies raise capital and avoid the high costs of federal reporting requirements.. Read more about safe banking act 2021 and let us know what you think.
Marijuana supporters have racked up wins at the state level in recent years, with almost 20 states now approving adult recreational marijuana usage.
But, as significant as those improvements have been, federal reform has been elusive — at least until now, if you believe the CEOs of America’s biggest cannabis businesses.
On Yahoo Finance Live this week, Trulieve CEO Kim Rivers and Curaleaf Executive Chair Boris Jordan both bet that the country’s onerous banking regulations on cannabis businesses may be removed as early as next year. Cannabis companies have been essentially shut out of the conventional banking system due to the fact that marijuana is still illegal at the federal level, and they often run cash-only stores.
The SAFE Banking Act, a bipartisan proposal, aims to address this by enabling banks to deal with cannabis businesses in jurisdictions where the drug has been legalized. The measure has previously cleared the House of Representatives four times, most recently by a vote of 321-101 in April, but it has never made it to a Senate vote under Republican rule and has yet to do so this year under Democratic leadership. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) have voiced worry that banking changes are insufficient, and have pushed for their own federal marijuana reform proposal, which includes broad social reforms and criminal expungements.
Jordan told Yahoo Finance that the SAFE Banking Act may ultimately pass the Senate as soon as the first quarter of 2022, citing his talks with Senate Democrats.
“I believe they will vote on a more comprehensive measure in the fourth quarter of 2021. I don’t believe it will pass “He indicated on Wednesday that getting the 10 Republican votes required to cross the Senate’s 60-vote barrier would be difficult. “I believe, however, that we have the votes in the Republican Party to pass SAFE Banking.”
Jordan emphasized the absence of Republican support for progressive changes sought by Democrats, such as federalizing what other states have done to divert cannabis tax income to minority areas. Despite having approximately similar cannabis usage as white Americans, data indicates that Black and Latino Americans have been disproportionately targeted by law enforcement. Democrats have also questioned the low number of minority-owned cannabis businesses that have been granted restricted operating licenses.
For his part, Booker recently said during a press conference announcing his more comprehensive reform proposal that he would do everything in his power to prevent more moderate measures, such as the SAFE Banking Act, from passing without restorative justice provisions. When pushed on his position during an interview with Yahoo Finance, Booker subsequently explained his support for the SAFE Banking Act, saying he thought it might be used as a carrot to entice greater assistance for people who have been harmed by America’s drug war.
“I’m hoping that all of the businesses out there who know they’re going to earn a lot of money would join me in standing up for what I believe is the greatest act of patriotism there, which is to say, ‘I’m not going to put my interests alone.’” I’m going to keep an eye out for my fellow American. I’m going to make a promise to them that I’m going to fight for those individuals who are facing financial ruin as a result of a nonviolent marijuana conviction, that I’m going to make sure we take care of everyone,’” Booker added.
On the business front, marijuana reform activists point out that many minority cannabis entrepreneurs face the same difficulties as their white counterparts when it comes to banking. While bigger cannabis companies may have an easier time obtaining huge financing rounds at cheaper rates, Jordan claims Curaleaf has assisted minority groups throughout the nation in starting firms.
“I’ve spoken to every politician, including [Sen.] Booker and [Senate Majority Leader] Schumer. ‘Guys, SAFE Banking will definitely amp up the social justice problems in minority areas,’ I’m saying. It will go a long way toward encouraging these individuals to start companies, establish shops, and work in the cannabis industry. Nothing is accomplished by doing nothing. That is precisely the point, “he said
Rivers, the CEO of Trulieve, a Florida-based cannabis company, also repeated her opinion that the SAFE Banking Act would be the first federal legislation to pass, and she agreed with Jordan’s timetable of next year.
“I’m on SAFE Banking for Q1 2022,” she stated on Yahoo Finance Live on Thursday. “The votes are already in place; all that remains is for it to be presented to the floor.”
It’s unclear how long progressives will want to exploit the milder financial reforms as a sweetener to their greater social justice drive. To be honest, the executive branch does not seem to be acting with much haste. On the same day that Schumer presented his comprehensive marijuana reform proposal, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki emphasized that President Biden’s views on marijuana reform had not advanced beyond his support for decriminalization.
When the Senate passed the bill (known as the Riegle-Neal Interstate Banking and Branching Efficiency Act) by a vote of 72-22 today, it was a big win for the marijuana industry. The bill directs the Treasury Department to finalize regulations that would allow banks to provide services to marijuana-related businesses. The bill also allows companies to store their cash and assets in banks, without fear of prosecution under federal law.. Read more about banking bill 2021 and let us know what you think.
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