The California State Senate voted 29-6 to approve a measure that will created a state-backed bank to handle the money generated by the newly legalized local recreational marijuana market.
According to an Associated Press report
, proponents of a state-backed bank argue that it is necessary because marijuana commerce is still illegal under federal law and most banks will not accept money from this industry. The bill would enable state-chartered banks and credit unions regulated by the California Department of Business Oversight to provide limited banking services to pot-related businesses, including rent payments and outlays for local and state taxes.
“We’re not using the federal system, we’re not using the federal wire,” said Democratic Sen. Bob Hertzberg of Van Nuys. “This is a short-term creative approach to deal with this extraordinary problem.”
The bill will now go to the State Assembly for consideration.