ABA Urges Committee to Support Cannabis Banking Bill

Ahead of tomorrow’s markup of the bipartisan Secure and Fair Enforcement Banking Act—which would address the issue of providing financial services to cannabis-related business—the American Bankers Association wrote to members of the House Financial Services Committee today in support of the bill.

ABA noted that the bill, which is sponsored by Reps. Ed Perlmutter (D-Colo.), Denny Heck (D-Wa.), Steve Stivers (R-Ohio) and Warren Davidson (R-Ohio), is “an important first step” to addressing the discrepancies between state and federal law by providing a safe harbor for banks that serve businesses in the 33 states where cannabis is currently legal.

“Providing a mechanism for the cannabis industry to access the banking system would help those communities reduce cash-motivated crimes, increase the efficiency of tax collections, and improve the financial transparency of the cannabis industry,” ABA wrote. “It would also subject cannabis businesses to increased oversight of their financial activities.”

ABA also submitted a joint letter with the Credit Union National Association in support of the bill. “Although we do not take a position on the legalization of marijuana, our members are committed to serving the financial needs of their communities—including those that have voted to legalize cannabis,” wrote ABA President and CEO Rob Nichols and CUNA President and CEO Jim Nussle.