House Passes Cannabis Legislation

On Sept. 25, 2019, the U.S. House passed legislation that would allow banks and credit unions to provide financial services to state-authorized cannabis businesses without federal penalties.

  • Vote on HR 1595 (SAFE bill) was 321-103
  • NOTE: The bill is intended to make it easier for marijuana dispensaries and growers — as well as real estate owners, law firms, and other businesses — to access the banking system instead of relying on cash.
  • Additional NOTE: Bill was written to get a more favorable response from Senate Banking Chair, Mike Crapo & Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell.
    -  The latest version of the legislation includes specific language stating that banks doing business with hemp
       companies will not face federal punishment. Many Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader McConnell,
       have been touting the legalization of hemp in the 2018 farm bill as a major legislative achievement.

    -  The new House version would also prevent any revival of an Obama-era program — known as “Operation
       Choke Point” — that GOP lawmakers say targeted payday lenders and gun retailers that will help garner GOP

    -  The hemp language will appeal to Sen. McConnell’s attention,” and The anti-Choke Point language will get 
       Senate Banking Chairman Crapo’s support that could lead to a bill advancing in the Senate and becoming law.
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