On Sept 21st, a group of senators introduced a revised bill that would give state-legal marijuana companies access to banking services. The bill is titled the Secure and Fair Enforcement Regulation (SAFER) Banking Act.
SAFER is a revamped version of the Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act, a bill that attempted to provide marijuana companies with access to banking services. Currently, federal law prohibits cannabis companies from banking services, leaving many businesses with no access to basic banking, credit card processing and other financial services.
Just last month a top official at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) wrote Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Administrator Anne Milgram calling for cannabis to be reclassified from a Schedule I substance to a Schedule III substance under the Controlled Substances Act.
Congressional researchers mentioned that the DEA will “likely” follow the HHS’s recommendation to reschedule cannabis from a Schedule I to Schedule III drug under the Controlled Substances Act, Forbes reported.
“We’re thrilled to see so much positive momentum as we march toward the Senate Banking Markup Hearing of the SAFER Banking Act next Wednesday,” said Lauren Niehaus, Arizona Dispensaries Association board member & executive director of government relations for Trulieve. “The bipartisan support that has materialized for SAFER Banking is a clear indicator that Congress is moving in the right direction on meaningful cannabis reform.”