Banking associations from all the 50 states across the U.S. have written a letter to the Senate Banking Committee to pass and advance the bipartisan bill before it seeking to protect financial institutions from federal penalties for doing business with licensed marijuana businesses.
In their letter delivered on April 20, the state banking associations observed that forcing cannabis businesses to operate on a cash-only basis exposes the businesses, their employees and the public to serious safety risks.
The banking associations also added that regulation and enforcement has been very difficult, something that can have adverse effects on the economy. Tax collection becomes inefficient and expensive since modern methods of remitting payments cannot be used. Compliance audits also become expensive because there is no clear paper trail to follow when looking into the financial records of marijuana businesses.
The banking associations also complained that while the Congressional Financial Services Committee passed a similar bill in March, other committees haven’t acted on the companion bills since then.
In their letter, the banking associations were quick to point out that they are neither in favor of nor against the legalization of marijuana. Their sole purpose is to serve the communities in their areas, including jurisdictions which have opted to legalize marijuana.
They added that there are many legitimate concerns which have to be considered on the subject of marijuana, but they were calling on Congress to narrow their focus for now on the issue of the banking sector with respect to the marijuana industry while other broader issues on marijuana policy are debated.
The Chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, Sen. Mike Crapo, revealed that he wouldn’t commit himself to bringing the marijuana banking bill before his committee until the Department of Justice had pronounced itself on the matter.
However, the banking association from the senator’s own home state seems to disagree with him and signed the letter. The association of attorneys general also disagrees and sent their own letter urging federal action to be taken to ease marijuana banking.
The National Association of State Treasurers has also written a letter calling on Congress to enact legislation which will make it possible for the cannabis industry to receive basic banking services in the states where such businesses are legal and licensed. Their reasons mirror the reasons stated by the 50 banking associations from all the states in the country.
Redfund Capital Corp. (CSE: LOAN) (OTCQB: PNNRF) (Frankfurt: O3X4) and Plus Products Inc. (CSE: PLUS) (OTCQB: PLPRF) look forward to the day when the federal government will listen to the voices of the different associations asking for enabling laws to allow cannabis businesses to thrive in the states where they are licensed to operate.
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