The agency wants to track cannabis companies and their banking activity
The White House has not done much about marijuana since Joe Biden’s term began. Still, the US Treasury Department has formally submitted a proposal to begin collecting data on cannabis businesses from banks and hopes to get the go-ahead from the Office. The proposal is part of its ongoing efforts to combat money laundering activities.
Late last week, a notice published in the Federal Register indicated that the Treasury’s Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) completed the initial processing of the plan and will accept a final round of public comments as the White House conducts its review. This OCC proposal was first announced mid-year when the agency made clear its intentions to scrutinize marijuana businesses as part of an annual Risk Summary Form (RSF).
This is again an indication of the federal government’s recognition of the legal marijuana market even though the plant remains a federally controlled substance. “The RSF collects data about different products, services, customers, and geographies (PSCs),” the latest notice says. To that end, Treasury said it wants to add “marijuana-related businesses” to the list of markets it constantly monitors, as well as five other new categories, such as ATM operators and cryptoassets.
Last month the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) released a comment after the proposal was initially announced. It said the organization is “pleased to see the OCC recognize the impact marijuana-related businesses are having on our financial system.”