Nevada hopes to do what the feds can’t with banking bill

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A bill is circulating that would allow banks and marijuana companies to work together

While certain lawmakers on Capitol Hill are content leaving marijuana companies with no safety net, Nevada isn’t prepared to be so laid back. A bill, Senate Bill 437 (SB 437) has been drafted that would authorize financial institutions in the state to work with marijuana dispensaries, something that should have been addressed on a federal level years ago.

The legislation, which was introduced yesterday by the Senate Committee on Judiciary, would create a system for licensing banks and credit unions so that they can offer banking options to marijuana dispensaries. The bill is designed to offer those businesses a “safe and efficient way” to invest in the economy and to pay taxes. It is described as “relating to financial institutions; creating the Marijuana Limited Charter Bank and Marijuana Credit Union Advisory Board; prescribing the membership and duties of the Board; authorizing the formation of marijuana limited charter banks and marijuana credit unions; setting forth certain requirements for the formation and operation of a marijuana limited charter bank and a marijuana credit union; and providing other matters properly relating thereto.”

Accounts from those licensed financial institutions would not be “required to be insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation or the National Credit Union Insurance,” according to the text of the bill. This would preclude the federal requirement for banks to be given a banking charter. The bill further states, “A marijuana limited charter bank or marijuana credit union must apply to the Commissioner for approval of a plan of insurance for the accounts of the marijuana limited charter bank or marijuana credit union under a contract of insurance issued by a private insurer, which must be approved by the Commissioner and the Commissioner of Insurance.”