State-Run Marijuana Bank Proposed in California

California led the way in medical marijuana legislation, and some officials hope it will do the same when it comes to cannabis banking.

The California Tax Board is proposing the creation of a state-run bank where cannabis companies can deposit their money, reducing the need for business owners to lug around thousands of dollars in cash.

After almost two decades of legalized medical marijuana in California, now is the time to look at what a state-run bank would look like, Fiona Ma, of the state Board of Equalization, said at a recent meeting, according to the Sacramento Bee.

The board has yet to write out a plan but would like to see some sort of state legislation introduced in the next session, the Bee reported. If California moves forward with the plan, it could set a blueprint for how other states can handle cannabis banking – though there will likely be numerous hurdles.

Banking continues to be a huge issue for cannabis companies, and the industry has experienced several setbacks recently.

The U.S. Federal Reserve recently said it wouldn’t give a master account to a Colorado credit union that was designed specifically to work with marijuana businesses. Two banks – MBank of Oregon and First Security Bank of Nevada – also backed away from the cannabis industry recently.

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4 comments on “State-Run Marijuana Bank Proposed in California
  1. Rick Fague on

    It remains to be seen whether they’ll be able to get a master account or not. Moves like this dance around the main issue, which is that the real problem is with the Fed. Until the Fed reclassifies MJ and removes 280E, it’s all about compliance and risk, which is what scares even some of the bigger banks, which are the only banks with deep enough pockets to afford compliance staff and manage the risk involved.

    I wish them luck, who knows, maybe California can succeed where the other states have failed.

  2. Ryn on

    I find it very interesting that when it comes time for the IRS to collect taxes from the plethora of businesses within the Cannabis Industry, they have made this path accessible and easy to accomplish. But yet, these businesses within the Cannabis industry cannot open bank accounts to accomplish normal everyday business tasks, due to an antiquated Federal system that is once again failing one of the biggest industries this world has seen in a long time. An industry that is greatly adding to the economy’s very existence and survival! There is something very wrong with that! If the Cannabis industry is deemed as such an illegal industry than why is it the IRS has found a way to collecting their share? … but our Federal government won’t allow a tax paying business to open a bank account?

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