Cannabis Banking Bill Clears Major Hurdle, Heads to Assembly
Senator Hertzberg’s SB 930 passes Senate Floor with bipartisan support
SACRAMENTO – Senator Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, announced today that his bill to establish a limited purpose state charter bank for use by licensed cannabis businesses passed on the Senate Floor.
Though Proposition 64 legalized adult-use cannabis in California, cannabis related businesses remain unable to deposit their income with federally-insured financial institutions, leading this $10 billion industry to operate mostly in cash.
Under SB 930, which is co-sponsored by Board of Equalization Member Fiona Ma, banks could issue checks to accountholders to be used for the following purposes:
- Pay state and local taxes and fees,
- Pay vendors from California for goods and services provided to the cannabis business,
- Pay rent, and
- Purchase state and local bonds and other debt instruments.
“The status quo for our growing legal cannabis industry is unsustainable,” said Senator Hertzberg. “It’s not only impractical from an accounting perspective, but it also presents a tremendous public safety problem. This bill takes a limited approach to provide all parties with a safe and reliable way to move forward on this urgent issue. ”
“California can’t wait to take action,” added Board of Equalization Member Fiona Ma. “With secure banking for cannabis through SB 930, the industry will benefit, the state will get a revenue boost and pot cash will get off our streets.”
The bill, which passed on a bipartisan 29-6 vote, next heads to the Assembly where it awaits committee referral.
Media Contact: Katie Hanzlik
Senator Robert M. Hertzberg
Capitol Building, Room 4038