By Russ Wiles | Arizona Republic
Marijuana-related businesses should have access to the banking system to boost tax collections and reduce crime, according to Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, with 37 other state and territorial attorneys general who are urging passage of federal legislation.
The attorneys general sent a letter to congressional leaders on May 8, urging them to enact the SAFE Banking Act or other legislation that would expand banking access for these companies.
The letter notes that 33 states and several U.S. territories have legalized medical marijuana. However, marijuana is still classified as an illegal substance by the federal government, meaning banks providing services to state-licensed marijuana businesses could be held criminally or civilly liable.
Legally operating cannabis businesses should have access to the same banking and financial services as every other business. This unfair hurdle creates unnecessary cost, expense and risk. Thrilled our Attorney General recognizes the need to provide our industry with access to these essential services.