Bank Officials Urge Congress to Let Cannabis Corporations Banking Solutions


Bank officials and cannabis market representatives joined with each other on Wednesday to urge Congress to permit marijuana enterprises access to banking solutions. At a hearing of the House Consumer Protection and Economic Institutions Subcommittee, lawmakers heard from advocates of the Safe and Fair Enforcement (Protected) Banking Act of 2019 who are looking for assistance for the bill.

Due to federal drug and funds laundering regulations, even cannabis enterprises operating legally below state laws are generally unable to receive economic solutions routinely applied by other industries. As a outcome, corporations in the cannabis market generally do small business only in money, placing the firms and their staff at fantastic threat. The Protected Banking Act would guard financial institutions and most likely make additional banks prepared to serve the cannabis market.

Gregory S. Deckard, speaking for the Independent Neighborhood Bankers of America, stated that the legislation “would present the required clarity” to economic institutions hesitant to deliver solutions to marijuana enterprises.

Mason Tvert, the communications director for the advocacy group the Marijuana Policy Project, noted that the Protected Banking Act is not about legalizing cannabis at the federal level.

“Lawmakers are not becoming asked to weigh in on whether or not marijuana should really be legal or not. They are merely searching at whether or not banking solutions should really be obtainable to these enterprises in states exactly where it is currently legal,” stated Tvert.

Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., founding member of the Congressional Cannabis Congress, stated that lawmakers desires to locate a resolution to the banking challenge.

“I’ve worked on this for years all more than the nation,” stated Blumenauer. “Nobody thinks it is a very good thought to prohibit them from possessing banking solutions.”

Opponent ‘Conflicted’

The only individual to testify at Wednesday’s hearing in opposition to the bill was Johnathan Talcott, the chairman of anti-legalization group Project SAM. Backers of the Protected Banking Act noted that Talcott is an lawyer for the firm Nelson Mullins, which was hired by Weedmaps to lobby for the cannabis market.

“He believes in his position sufficient to be right here and testify in Congress, but he functions for a firm whose clientele oppose what he’s testifying to,” said Marijuana Policy Project director of federal policies Don Murphy. “Anybody with a shred of integrity would just leave, it is that straightforward.”

Justin Strekal, policy director for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, was also important of Talcott.

“Mr. Talcott is a hypocrite of the worst type,” stated Strekal.

In response to the criticism, Talcott stated there was no conflict of interest.

“I do not take any funds from the pot market,” Talcott stated. “In reality, if I genuinely wanted to make a lot of funds I wouldn’t be standing right here appropriate now.”

Murphy stated that Talcott’s presence at the hearing showed that the bill has tiny opposition.

“If this is the most effective the opposition can do — to get a guy this conflicted to sit in Congress, to stand ahead of Congress, and oppose our position — they do not have a lot,” he stated. “They didn’t bring a physician, they didn’t bring a scientist, they brought a hack.”


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