Senate Schedules Hearing on Cannabis Banking Bill

A Senate legislative committee has scheduled a hearing on a bill that would give cannabis businesses operating legally under state law access to the U.S. banking industry. The hearing before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs on “Challenges for Cannabis and Banking: Outside Perspectives” will be held on Tuesday, July 23 and will include testimony from sponsors of the Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act of 2019 (S. 1200) and representatives of the cannabis, banking, and credit union industries.

Under federal drug and money laundering regulations, even those cannabis businesses operating legally under state laws are usually not able to obtain access to common financial services. Consequently, companies in the cannabis industry often do business only in cash, putting the firms and their employees at risk of crime. The SAFE Banking Act would prohibit federal regulators for penalizing financial institutions and their employees for providing services to legal cannabis businesses, likely making more banks willing to serve the industry.

Witnesses Set to Testify

Witnesses scheduled to testify at next week’s hearing include Democratic Sen. Jeff Merkley of Oregon, the sponsor of the SAFE Act, and Sen. Cory Gardner, a Republican from Colorado who is one of

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