September 26, 2019

Congressman Neguse Helps Pass the SAFE Banking Act of 2019 on the House Floor

Washington, D.C.— Today, Congressman Joe Neguse, representing Colorado’s 2nd Congressional District voted in favor of the Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act on the House Floor to allow state-legal cannabis businesses to access banks in their state. H.R. 1595, put forward by Congressman Ed Perlmutter (CO-07) aims to provide the Colorado cannabis industry with a safe and legal alternative to cash-only financial operations. The bipartisan bill passed on the floor by a margin of 321 to 103.

“The SAFE Banking Act is a common-sense solution to ensure cannabis businesses in Colorado can access banks and financial institutions in our state,” said Congressman Joe Neguse. “These businesses are licensed by the state, and they have a right to use safe and smart financial practices like the rest of us. I’m proud to support hard-working Coloradans and their families, and I thank my colleagues for doing the same.” 

Currently, cannabis businesses in states with a legalized industry do not have access to bank accounts or credit cards, forcing them to operate exclusively on cash income. These conditions have left businesses vulnerable to theft and auditing challenges and create a perception of criminality within an industry that is legal in some form in 47 states and the District of Columbia. The bill will give more power to states to govern the conditions in which their local businesses operate.

Congressman Joe Neguse is also a member of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus and has co-sponsored legislation to prevent legal marijuana businesses from getting hit with an unfair tax bill (the Small Business Tax Equity Act), as well as the Marijuana Revenue and Regulation Act, and the Responsibly Addressing the Marijuana Policy Gap Act, and additional pieces of legislation seeking to ease the conflict between state and cannabis federal laws.