DENVER — Tim Cullen’s marijuana business brought in millions of dollars last year, but he’s had a hard time finding a bank to take the money. He’s cycled through 14 checking accounts in six years. Recently, he said, a bank shut down all his personal accounts, including college savings for his 3-year-old daughter.
Federal law prohibits banks and credit unions from taking marijuana money. So here in Colorado, everyone involved with the state’s legal cannabis industry has a banking problem. Businesses can’t get loans, customers have to pay in cash, and state tax collectors are processing bags of bills.
Some community financial institutions have become more open to serving the cannabis industry since the U.S. Treasury and Justice departments said they won’t go after institutions that keep a close eye on their clients and report suspected wrongdoing, such as funding gang activity. [Read More @ Pew Charitable Trust]