Congressional Talks On Marijuana Banking And Expungements Bill Intensify As Advocates Push For Equity Amendments

Congressional Talks On Marijuana Banking And Expungements Bill Intensify As Advocates Push For Equity Amendments
MJ moment

Talks are intensifying over a marijuana banking and expungements bill that Senate leadership is working to finalize, with advocates feeling increasingly optimistic about seeing action during the lame duck session. Still, other activists are making clear that they want to see amendments to the SAFE Banking language to incorporate targeted equity provisions, arguing that it’s not enough to simply attach separate expungements provisions to the financial services reform. Bipartisan and bicameral offices have been in negotiations about the so-called SAFE Plus package for months, and the latest signals indicate that the legislation will be less wide ranging than some initially expected—with previously floated sections on veterans and small business assistance seemingly being left aside as banking and expungements remain at the center of the talks—though the text has yet to be released so it remains unclear what will make it into the final product. The negotiations in their current form are leading to “unprecedented levels of optimism” about passing a cannabis reform package by the end of the current Congress, one advocate familiar with the status of negotiations and who did not wish to be named told Marijuana Moment. One sign that a deal may be imminent is that Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) met with other key lawmakers, including Senate Banking Committee Chairman Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and bipartisan lead Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking sponsors Sens. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Steve Daines (R-MT) last week, as Politico reported. For other advocates, support for SAFE Plus will be largely contingent on what happens with the banking language, as they’re discontent with the current provisions that have passed the House in some form seven times now. Specifically, they’d like to see the bill amended to provide funding for Minority Deposit Institutions (MDIs) and Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) that…

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Source : Congressional Talks On Marijuana Banking And Expungements Bill Intensify As Advocates Push For Equity Amendments

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