Pennsylvania Lawmakers Advance Their Own Cannabis Banking Bill

Pennsylvania Lawmakers Advance Their Own Cannabis Banking Bill
High Times

With an effort to give cannabis businesses access to financial institutions stalling in Congress, some lawmakers in Pennsylvania are taking matters into their own hands.  A committee in the state Senate on Wednesday approved bipartisan legislation to “afford state-legal cannabis better access to banking and insurance services,” according to local television station WHTM. This would help with the overwhelming problem in legal cannabis of the lack of access to safe banking resources.  Per the station, the bill “authorizes but does not require financial institutions to provide services to state-legal cannabis businesses,” while also permitting “Pennsylvania’s medical cannabis industry the ability to take out ordinary business expenses when filing state taxes.” According to Local 21 News, the “bill puts safeguards in place so banks and insurers can do business with the medical cannabis industry without fear of penalty.” The bill was written by two state senators: Republican John DiSanto and Democrat Sharif Street. It was then approved by the State Senate Banking and Insurance Committee. “Access to financial and insurance services is essential for operating any business, and it is against the public interest to relegate a multi-billion-dollar industry to deal in piles of cash,” DiSanto said, as quoted by WHTM. “Banking this cash safely in Pennsylvania provides certainty for businesses, is a huge opportunity to grow our economy and should ultimately lower costs for medical cannabis consumers.” “This is a huge step in the right direction making it easier for banks to do something because right now, most banks are scared to do anything,” said Street, as quoted by Local 21 News. “The law is set up in a way where we are treating these folks like they are involved in illegal drug trafficking.” The bill represents an effort to bring state-level reform in an area of cannabis policy where…

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Source : Pennsylvania Lawmakers Advance Their Own Cannabis Banking Bill

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