State Associations Urge Action on SAFE Banking Act

Fifty state bankers associations on Friday wrote to Senate Banking Committee leaders urging them to support the SAFE Banking Act, a bill that would provide a safe harbor for depository institutions seeking to serve legitimate cannabis-related businesses in states where such activity is legal. The associations called for a markup of the bill “as soon as possible.”

The bill was passed by a bipartisan majority in the House last year, but has since stalled in the Senate. Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) in December expressed concerns about the bill related to public health and safety, legacy cash, money laundering and interstate commerce.

“Although there are admittedly broader public policy questions at play, we ask that you evaluate and address this pressing banking problem, which is within your power to resolve,” the associations said. “Doing so will reap immediate public safety, tax and regulatory benefits while Congress continues to grapple with broader decisions about national drug policy.”