California marijuana banking bill dies but might return in 2020

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A bill to set up a state-run banking system for California cannabis companies died after months of legislative wrangling, but the measure’s sponsor already pledges to reintroduce the bill in 2020.

Senate Bill 51, sponsored by Sen. Robert Hertzberg, was one of the most closely watched cannabis industry measures in the California legislature this year.

If it had succeeded, the measure would have established a state-chartered banking system that could have been used by legal marijuana companies, bypassing all the federal problems that have kept many MJ companies from obtaining financial services.

Hertzberg didn’t say why the bill wasn’t moving forward, noting in a news release it was moved to the “inactive file” in the Legislature.

However, both Hertzberg and state Treasurer Fiona Ma said in the release they’re both intending to push the bill in the next legislative session, which begins in January.

“I will continue to champion this issue on behalf of business investors as well as constituents that voted for a healthy, legal cannabis industry in California,” Ma said.

For more information on Senate Bill 51, click here.