State-Run Marijuana Bank Proposed in California

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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.