Cannabis businesses continue to face a big issue – cash revenue from legal, state-level cannabis sales which are in direct conflict with federally regulated banks. Senate Bill 51 is now positioned to provide a way for cannabis businesses to gain the right of accessible banking as any other business if it receives the votes necessary to pass. The SAFE Banking Act has 206 representatives, almost half of all the House members, as cosponsors of the bill.
Relief for cannabis businesses who have large amounts of cash and face difficulties from the inability to bank like other business is soon to come. The exact date that Senate Bill 51, or the SAFE Banking Act, will be voted on is not yet announced. However, the bill has been placed on the Union Calendar. The House Judiciary Committee expedited the bill after it chose to not report on it and instead see that it advances immediately.
Neal Levine, CEO of Cannabis Trade Federation, stated: “We remain encouraged at the steady progress the SAFE Banking Act is making. With over 200 sponsors, it is a near certainty that we can expect this key piece of legislation to pass the full U.S. House in the near future, and we hope the U.S. Senate takes note of the strong bipartisan support and advances the bill as well.”
The SAFE banking Act will create an ease of access to banks for cannabis businesses to operate with the same rights as non-cannabis businesses. Created under the bill’s legislation, a permit grants access for private banks and credit unions to apply for special access under a “limited-purpose state charter”. This state charter is what allows for the applicant private bank or credit union to offer legal banking services to cannabis businesses that are licensed by the state. Cannabis businesses would be able to get specially made checks to allow a much easier method to pay taxes at a local and state level, rent, and fees.
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