Oregon Leader Calls For Clearer Cannabis Banking Rules

Ron Strider

Well-Known Member
The Sacramento Business Journal, a sister paper to the Portland Business Journal, delved into the world of cannabis-related funds last week.

It's a revealing piece that examines banking issues related to legal pot sales and prominently features in Oregon.

Writer Mark Anderson starts in his home state.

"The billions that will be generated from California's soon-to-be-legal recreational marijuana industry cannot be banked legally.

"And that presents a real conundrum for companies that sell pot"

The PBJ's Pete Danko has covered the topic before, as Oregon adults have been able to buy recreational pot for more than a year. With that backdrop, it's revealing to watch as other states begin facing that same "conundrum."

Anderson gleaned expertise from a keen Oregon observer for his story, predicated on the reality that, under federal law, marijuana is still illegal. As a result, banks, credit unions and brokerages – they're all under federal oversight – could lose their operating licenses if they take money associated with cannabis.

Here's a key passage from Anderson's story that features Linda Navarro, CEO of the Oregon Bankers Association:

Cannabis money eventually touches the banking system in one way or another, as the cash derived from the sale of recreational marijuana is eventually spent on other goods and services and deposited into banks, said Linda Navarro, CEO of the Oregon Bankers Association. But there is still no direct link between the banking and cannabis industries in Oregon and Washington, where pot has been legal for several years, said Navarro.

"I would like to believe that over time it has gotten better, but it hasn't. The federal message seems to be: Don't get too comfortable," Navarro said.

Navarro summarized the issue neatly.

"As the legal cannabis train keeps on going down the track ... something will have to be done at the federal level," she said. "It would be better for everyone to have the industry have access to the real banking system."


News Moderator: Ron Strider 420 MAGAZINE ®
Full Article: https://www.bizjournals.com/portlan...rnia-legalization-looms-an-oregon-leader.html
Author: Andy Giegerich
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