WASHINGTON, D.C. – Following final week’s reintroduction of the Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act in the House of Representatives, the invoice has been reintroduced at this time in the U.S. Senate. If enacted, the laws would offer authorized protections for banks and insurers that present providers to licensed hashish companies. It additionally would safeguard in opposition to federal banking regulators prohibiting attorneys and landlords from offering providers to state-legal hashish companies.

The Senate model of the bipartisan laws was launched by Senators Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) and Steve Daines (R-Mont.).

Senators Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Angus King (I-Vt.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Chris Murphy (D-Mass.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Alex Padilla (D-Calif.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska), Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) co-sponsor the laws.

“Thanks to this bipartisan group of Senators for reaching across the aisle to introduce this bill that addresses an important public safety issue that comes with legal businesses that currently must operate on a cash-only basis,” stated Credit Union National Association (CUNA) President and Chief Executive Officer Jim Nussle. “With both chambers introducing this bill in a bipartisan fashion, it’s clear Congress views this as an important priority, and CUNA, Leagues, and credit unions will continue their engagement to get it across the finish line.”

This is the second time the SAFE Banking Act has been launched in the Senate. It first superior to the department in September 2019 however was delayed in early 2020 resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Currently, there serves seventy-two U.S. Senators—twenty-five Republicans, forty-seven Democrats—who symbolize one among the forty-seven states in which medical and/or leisure hashish has been legalized.

“[The SAFE Banking Act] will provide needed certainty for legal Montana cannabis businesses and give them the ability to freely use banks, credit unions, and other financial institutions without the fear of punishment,” stated Senator Daines. “This in turn will help increase public safety, reduce crime, support Montana small businesses, create jobs, and boost local economies. A win-win for all.”

Increasing security and decreasing crime are two huge motivations behind the SAFE Banking Act. Due to federal prohibition, state-legal hashish companies presently should function on a cash-only foundation. A indisputable fact that, in line with the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA), “creates numerous public safety and transparency issues for the industry, law enforcement, government officials, and other service providers, and has led to cannabis businesses being increasingly targeted by criminals with sometimes fatal results.”

“No one working in a store or behind a register should have to worry about experiencing a traumatic robbery at any moment,” stated Senator Merkley. “That means we can’t keep forcing legal cannabis businesses to operate entirely in cash—a nonsensical rule that is an open invitation to robbery and money laundering. Let’s make 2021 the year that we get this bill signed into law so we can ensure that all legal cannabis businesses have access to the financial services they need to help keep their employees safe.”

With Democrats now in management of the House, Senate, and White House, members of the hashish and monetary industries appear assured the SAFE Banking Act will go this 12 months.

“With new Senate leadership now firmly in favor of cannabis policy reform, we are optimistic that this narrowly tailored—but absolutely necessary—legislation will be allowed to progress through the hearing process without delay,” stated NCIA Chief Executive Officer Aaron Smith.

Camilo Lyon, managing director and life-style manufacturers and wellness analyst at world monetary providers agency BTIG, LLC, is also optimistic. “We continue to believe the bill can pass both chambers potentially by late summer, and while that would bring tangible benefits to the industry it would do little to change the already robust growth trajectory of it,” he stated.

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