The SAFE Banking Act would reform federal law to allow for better access to the nation’s financial system for cannabis companies.
Many cannabis companies have had their assets frozen and/or accounts closed simply because they were involved in the cannabis industry. Other cannabis companies were unable to open an account in the first place due to the policies of many financial institutions.
Local credit unions have been increasingly filling the void in the United States, however, the situation is still far from optimal. A reported vote in the United States House of Representatives for the SAFE Banking Act could change that. Per NORML:
Majority Leader Hoyer on Friday announced that members of the House are anticipated to hold a floor vote next week on The SAFE Banking Act (HR1595), which explicitly permits banks and other financial institutions to work directly with state-legal marijuana businesses.
“The upcoming banking vote is an important first step by Congress, but in no way should it be the last,” said NORML Political Director Justin Strekal. “Much more action will still need to be taken by lawmakers, in particular efforts to move forward and pass comprehensive reform legislation like The MORE Act — which is sponsored by the Chair of the House Judiciary — in order to ultimately comport federal law with the new political and cultural realities surrounding marijuana.”
Only time will tell if the vote actually occurs. The bill is co-sponsored by over 1/3rd of the entire chamber, so if the bill actually does get a vote its chances of passing are strong.
It’s unclear what appetite the United States Senate will have for the bill. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has famously opposed virtually every bill that has come out of the House. Will this bill be different?
The first step to finding out will be if/when the House votes to pass the SAFE Act. All eyes from the cannabis community will be on the House this week to see if the historic vote takes place.