Legal banking bills and notes: July
Missouri-based Triad Bank has publicly announced its support of and intent to permit banking for marijuana businesses in the state of Missouri. President and CEO Jim Regna, has stated that logistically it won’t be possible for Triad to serve all of the cannabis businesses in Missouri and will be selective about who it selects as clients. Choosing mostly to deal with clients with established history in business and compliance fields.
Industry leaders were hopeful recently that a second prominent Missouri bank was ready to step forward, but plans and negotiations fell apart swiftly with tenured board members expressing concern over compliance issues and public perception.
The House Appropriations Committee approved the fiscal year 2020 Financial Services and General Government bill which includes a provision protecting banks serving lawful cannabis businesses in states with legal medical and recreational use programs from federal financial regulators, but does not offer any protection from the U.S. Department of Justice.
The bill was approved by a vote of 30-21. Unlike the SAFE Banking Act, the provision would be in effect only for the next fiscal year. The house also has an independent marijuana banking bill that has cleared committee, both bills have stalled, waiting for a floor hearing.
The SAFE (Secure And Fair Enforcement) Banking Act now has the support of 50 state banking associations, the National Association of State Treasurers, and enjoys broad bipartisan appeal, but lawmakers are considering introducing amendments to garner more support from traditional conservatives by extending banking protections to hemp and CBD businesses. Other amendments may include blocking regulators from pursuing the gun and payday loan industries.
Senate Financial Services Committee Chairman Mike Crapo (R-ID) told American Banker that the committee is open to holding a hearing on cannabis banking regulations.
“Nothing is set but I think it should be relatively soon,” Crapo said.