California is one step closer to establishing its own banking system for cannabis businesses.
The California state senate passed Senate Bill 930 yesterday that would allow the creation of financial institutions regulated by the state's Department of Business Oversight. The banks would be able to accept deposits that federally-sanctioned banks won't take.
Cannabis businesses have been forced to operate only in cash which creates a public safety issue according to the bill's author, state Senator Robert Hertzberg of Van Nuys.
The new banks would allow cannabis businesses to issue checks to pay for things like state and local taxes, vendors for goods and services, rent, as well as purchase state and local bonds and other debt instruments.
“The status quo for our growing legal cannabis industry is unsustainable,” Hertzberg said in a statement. “It’s not only impractical from an accounting perspective, but it also presents a tremendous public safety problem. This bill takes a limited approach to provide all parties with a safe and reliable way to move forward on this urgent issue.”
The bill passed on a 29-6 vote and it now heads for the Assembly where it awaits committee referral.
Photo: Getty Images