SAFE Banking Act reintroduced as momentum for hashish reform – MJNews Community continues to develop

The US House has passed landmark bipartisan legislation several times in the past two years

DISTRICT COLOMBIA: U.S. Representative Ed Perlmutter (CO-07) reintroduced his landmark laws to reform federal cannabis laws and reduce the risk to public safety in communities across the country. The bipartisan SAFE Banking Act (Secure and Fair Enforcement) of 2021 – written by Perlmutter and sponsored by representatives Nydia M. Velázquez (D-NY-07), Steve Stivers (R-OH-15) and Warren Davidson (R-OH -08) and sponsored by more than 100 members – would allow marijuana-related companies to access the banking system in states with legalized marijuana and strict regulatory structures. The SAFE Banking Act is believed to be the first of many cannabis reforms that Congress must address.

Forty-seven states, four US territories, and the District of Columbia – 97.7% of the US population – have legalized some form of recreational or medicinal marijuana, including CBD. However, the current law prohibits legitimate licensed marijuana companies from accessing banking services and products such as custodians and checking accounts, causing companies to work with cash. This is a serious risk to the public safety of our communities, leading to theft, robbery, break-ins, or worse, as Colorado saw in the June 2016 murders of Travis Mason and Michael Arthur in Portland, Oregon in December 2020.

“The spirit is out of the bottle and has been for many years. Thousands of employees and businesses in this country have been forced to trade stacks of cash for far too long, and it is the responsibility of Congress to take and take action to approximate federal and state laws for the safety of our constituents and communities. The need for public safety is urgent, and a need for public health and economy has also emerged as the pandemic exacerbates the cash-only problem for the industry, “Congressman Perlmutter said. “The industry was seen as essential in many states, but it still had to work with cash, which poses a significant risk to the public health of companies and their workers. As our economic recovery begins, the admission of cannabis companies to the banking system would also mean an influx of cash into the economy and the opportunity to create well-paying jobs. Many thanks to MPs Velázquez, Stivers and Davidson for their continued support and input on the bill. I look forward to working with Senators Merkley and Daines to pass the SAFE Banking Act in the Senate and incorporate it into law. “

“The cannabis industry has operated with great success, and many of these companies were seen as essential when the coronavirus pandemic hit,” said Congresswoman Velázquez. “Without the ability to safely use the banking system, companies fall behind when it comes to cannabis and resort to tactics that can jeopardize public safety and economic success. For this reason, I am proud to work with representatives Perlmutter, Stivers and Davidson to introduce the SAFE Banking Act to allow these companies access to the banking system in states that have legalized cannabis, as is currently the case with any other company in Case is. This will help create jobs in communities across America while also stimulating the economy as we recover from the aftermath of the pandemic. “

“We have a responsibility to legislate for the reality we live in, and the reality is that legal companies in 33 states, including Ohio, are denied access to the banking system and forced to take enormous risks just because of the way they do business to be received in cash, ”said Congressman Stivers. “The SAFE Banking Act is about protecting people, which 321 of my colleagues recognized last year. I look forward to this bill reaching the President’s desk this Congress. “

“I am pleased that we are reintroducing SAFE Banking, with the support of both parties. This bill is an important hedge against financial cancellations and protects companies and industries that are falling out of favor in the face of the latest trends of the day, ”said Congressman Davidson. “Today is about cannabis, hemp and firearms banking, but tomorrow there could be another industry whose access to the banking system is threatened by law or public opinion. With SAFE Banking, no bank should be forced to cancel their customers by a mob saying, “You’re not going to bank THESE people, are you?” Unfortunately, this has happened too many times in American history and it has to come to an end. “

“No one who works in a store or behind a registry should have to worry about experiencing a traumatic robbery at any moment. That means we cannot force legal cannabis companies to work exclusively with cash – a nonsensical rule that is an open invitation to robbery and money laundering, ”said Senator Merkley (D-OR). “Let’s make 2021 the year this bill is signed so we can ensure that all legal cannabis companies have access to the financial services they need to keep their employees safe.”

“The SAFE Banking Act will help small businesses in Montana create jobs, boost the local economy and improve public safety,” said Senator Daines (R-MT). “I’m happy to be working on this bipartisan piece of legislation to keep small businesses in Montana safe. Montana entrepreneurs should be able to freely use banks, credit unions, and other financial institutions without fear of punishment. “

At the 116th Congress, 206 members supported the SAFE Banking Act and the US House passed it with a broad bipartisan 321 to 103 vote, with 91 Republicans and one independent vote in support. The law was also passed under the Heroes Act, a previous COVID relief package that was approved by the House twice. In February 2019, the SAFE Banking Act triggered the first Congressional hearing on cannabis banking.

The SAFE Banking Act provides anti-money laundering protection for all revenues from these state-legal marijuana businesses. This will bring money off the streets into the financial system, which is used to eradicate fraud and illegal activity. This bill also includes safeguards for hemp and CBD-related businesses that, despite legalizing hemp in the 2018 Farm Bill, are still struggling to gain access to financial services. The current version of the bill has been slightly updated to reflect minor technical changes to the safe haven, strengthened hemp regulations and other technical updates.

The U.S. cannabis industry continues to grow rapidly. Its current value is estimated at $ 17.7 billion, a significant portion of which remains unbanked. As of January 2021, the legal cannabis industry will support 321,000 jobs nationwide. Employment growth of 250% is forecast in this market for the period 2018-2028. This is the fastest rate for any sector in the US. If you bring in that money, the industry will be safer and banks and credit unions will have more capital to lend during the economic recovery wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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