Marijuana, which has traditionally been viewed as an illegal drug, has recently been allowed for recreational usage. But the drug’s primary trade executed in all–cash deals has always been a cause for trouble.
Now Colorado has thought of an interesting and legalized system that might significantly curb the cash–only deals for procuring and selling of Marijuana. Essentially, Colorado has approved a bill aimed at providing newly-legalized marijuana businesses access to basic banking services.
The primary intention of opening up banking access for marijuana businesses is to move the marijuana industry away from its cash-only roots. The proposal is forwarded by Democrat Representative Jonathan Singer. Surprisingly, the bill has full support of both the parties in the state, reported Collegian.
Singer termed the development as a critical development, “This is the final piece to our pot puzzle,”
Colorado is incidentally the first ever state in the United States of America to allow sale of marijuana. However, it has strictly restricted the usage to ‘recreational purposes’ only. In simpler terms, only a small quantity can be purchased and that too by an individual.
Needless to say, such restrictions have significantly boosted the legitimate sale of the drug and its usage. The legal sale alone has been so phenomenal that it made roughly $2 Million (£1.2 Million) in ‘Marijuana Taxes‘ in the first month retail sales were allowed, reported Sky News.
Earlier, the cash-only nature of the industry made pot businesses easy targets for crime and limited owners’ access to credit and capital. But chiefly, it hindered the state’s ability to track revenues for tax-collection purposes. Evidently, a huge portion of cash exchange simply couldn’t be taxed causing a huge loss of revenue to the exchequer.
However, this is expected to change soon. The proposed bill should allow marijuana sellers to pool money in co–operatives. But, the co-ops would only take effect if the US Federal Reserve agrees to allow them to do things like accept credit cards or checks.
The bill, nicknamed “Cannabis Credit Co-Ops” has already cleared the first hurdle. It was recently passed by the state’s legislature. The bill has now been sent to Governor John Hickenlooper for approval. However, it is now a mere formality since Mr. Hickenlooper supports the pot bank plan and is expected to sign it into law. He just wants to review the “final language”.
The bold steps taken by Colorado are soon expected to be reiterated by Washington State. With the financial system backing the recreational use of marijuana, will the usage go up or down?
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