Massachusetts credit union says it will serve recreational marijuana businesses

Recreational and medical marijuana businesses in Massachusetts can look forward to having access to banking services after a credit union announced it is willing to serve them.

The GFA Federal Credit Union, a state-chartered institution with $500 million in assets, will begin accepting marijuana clients by Oct. 1, offering basic services that include cash management, checking accounts, payroll, wire transfers and bill payments, The Boston Globe reported.

As of February 2018, less than 4% of the nation’s banks and credit unions served state-legal marijuana businesses because of fears federal regulators could potentially take away financial institutions’ licenses for serving businesses that deal with a federally prohibited substance.

“We’re looking at a cannabis business as a legitimate business that wants to be recognized as such and that, without banking services, presents a tremendous public safety issue in our communities,” Tina Sbrega, GFA’s CEO, told the Globe.

“Otherwise, you’re talking millions and millions of dollars of cash on the street.”

GFA has seven branches in northern and central Massachusetts, plus two in New Hampshire, according to its website.

To launch the new business, GFA is incorporating a new subsidiary and partnering with Safe Harbor, a marijuana banking services firm created by Partner Colorado Credit Union in Denver.

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3 comments on “Massachusetts credit union says it will serve recreational marijuana businesses
  1. George Bianchini on

    The GFA Federal Credit Union-Thank You
    Ever think about expanding to California. I can think of about $2 billion
    worth of banking needs ready to find a home.

  2. John Fracassini on

    Congratulations to the GFA Credit Union. This could be the catalyst for other financial institutions to recognize the legitimacy of the marijuana industry, and prompt Congress to abandon its recalcitrance and hostility to the industry and change federal law.

  3. grant on

    about time. The blatant hypocrisy by the government regarding MJ cash is amazing, even for politicians. hundreds of millions of MJ cash has been deposited by municipalites, and happily accepted by all the major banks.

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