Provide Banking Access for State MJ Industry
function share_this(num) {
 tit=encodeURIComponent('Provide Banking Access for State MJ Industry');
 site = new Array(5);
 return false;

Provide Banking Access for State MJ Industry
Posted by CN Staff on January 31, 2013 at 06:03:36 PT
Seattle Times Editorial
Source: Seattle Times 
Washington State -- To get a handle on the strange new reality of Washington’s legal marijuana market, consider what could happen when state-licensed pot stores open in December and none of the businesses can get a bank account. That means no fiscal paper trail for state tax auditors and regulators to follow. No commercial loans or credit-card processing. And piles and piles of cash, in a startup industry estimated at $2 billion. This is no idle thought experiment. Federal banking regulations consider marijuana transactions as de facto money laundering. Many medical-marijuana dispensaries are unable to access mainstream banks and credit unions.
To create a functioning marijuana market — as voters enthusiastically endorsed when they approved Initiative 502 — state and federal elected officials need to think creatively and act boldly to solve the riddle of banking access. A task force helping set up a marijuana market in Colorado, our state’s sister in legalization, has considered solutions including financial cooperatives without federal banking insurance, as well as a state-chartered bank. Such discussions are just beginning in Washington. Sharon Foster, chairwoman of the state Liquor Control Board, suggested creating the equivalent of a “Good To Go” pass for marijuana stores. A state-chartered bank, such as the Bank of North Dakota, has been suggested, but it would require tens of millions in state funding for capitalization, making it a non-starter in the face of a $1 billion state budget deficit and obligations to improve public education. The cleanest solution lies in Washington, D.C. The Treasury Department could amend parts of The Bank Secrecy Act to exempt state-licensed marijuana businesses from reporting requirements intended to target drug traffickers. That might be tough, but this is an opportunity for our delegation to lead. U.S. Rep. Denny Heck, D-Olympia, was just appointed to the House Financial Services Committee. U.S. Rep. Suzan DelBene, D-Medina, and a former state Department of Revenue director, is on the House Judiciary Committee. A legal marijuana market needs sharply drawn regulation and strong enforcement. A cash-only industry would be a big mistake. Time for leaders to think creatively and act boldly.Source: Seattle Times (WA)Published: January 30, 2013Copyright: 2013 The Seattle Times CompanyContact: opinion seatimes.comWebsite:  -- Cannabis  Archives 
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help 

Comment #7 posted by John Tyler on February 01, 2013 at 08:10:33 PT
When there is money involved the banks and politicians will find a way.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #6 posted by kaptinemo on January 31, 2013 at 10:53:26 PT:
Schmeff's got the right idea
The established banks have to be weaned off the dirty money before they can honestly act as brokers. And given that those banks have become as dependent on their monetary 'fix' of laundered money as any heroin user is for theirs, it may take a kind of 'cold turkey' treatment to break the cycle. Not likely to happen, given the de facto political power of those banks. They work against relegalization for obvious reasons.Time to start fresh and clean. A State bank, like North Dakota has, would be a huge step in the right direction. 
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #5 posted by schmeff on January 31, 2013 at 09:27:02 PT
State Chartered Bank
"A state-chartered bank, such as the Bank of North Dakota, has been suggested, but it would require tens of millions in state funding for capitalization, making it a non-starter in the face of a $1 billion state budget deficit and obligations to improve public education." Imagine: a bank owned by the citizens of Washington state, not banksters. Capitalized by a real commodity, not mythical algebraic derivatives. I'd put my money in that bank if for no other reason than to stick it to the aforementioned financial criminals. Bet a lot of other folks would too.If a regulatory framework is adopted for recreational cannabis that is consumer-friendly, I think it's fair to assume considerable revenue and taxes will be generated. The capitalization costs for the People's Bank of Washington would be quickly repaid. After that, profits can help eliminate the state's budget deficit and help improve educational opportunities in the state through banking and lending policies that favor people and businesses over corporate greed.Tens of millions to capitalize such a bank is small change in the overall budget. It would be short-sighted to let such an opportunity expire. 
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #4 posted by sinsibility on January 31, 2013 at 08:21:20 PT
Is that how big this is?
Among the changes the world desperately needs along with the end of the drug war is the complete overhaul of the banking system. Maybe that can be begun as we reinvent society in a post-hysteria paradyme.Nobody trusts banksters at all so at least it will be attractive to a much wider population, and really shows the world an upside to ending the drug war.There goes my over-positive expectancy mating with my big thinking again! I keep skipping my self-control classes. 
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #3 posted by The GCW on January 31, 2013 at 08:21:18 PT
Using banks as a tool of discrimination.
The banking dilema is one the Fed's are responsible for and they can not ignore.Now the Feds know with certainty, perpetuating cannabis prohibition has its limits. There is NO going back.2013, 2014... More states are going to discard cannabis prohibition, whether it be medical use or outright RE-legalizing the plant or both; so more and more states are going to pressure the Feds to clear the way for banking availability. -It's a necessity.The use of banking as a tool of discrimination has to end.Lawyers, progressive politicians and citizens should find a way to tag cannabis prohibition as a form of discrimination and use it as a means to end the farce.After discrediting the Fed's claims of cannabis being something evil, all that's left standing is their interest in discrimination.  The federal government has been the problem all along and the banking issue exposes it better than most other related issues.And banking is just one of the facets working to end one of America's worst policy failures in history.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #2 posted by FoM on January 31, 2013 at 07:39:14 PT
Maybe this problem will be resolved soon.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #1 posted by The GCW on January 31, 2013 at 06:48:43 PT
Banking could break down Fed's resistance.
There has been mounting pressure for the U.S. government to RE-legalize cannabis. Cannabis prohibitionists can not any longer believe they can revert back toward more staunch prohibition methods. Moving forward with RE-legalizing the God-given plant is the only reality there is.Will the banking problem that states are facing be the issue that breaks the Fed's back?Can the Fed's be held liable due to their discredited actions?
[ Post Comment ]

Post Comment