Illinois Urges President Trump To Let Banks Work With Cannabis Companies

The Illinois treasurer has sent President Donald Trump a letter urging him to give clear guidance to the banking industry about medical marijuana.

State Treasurer Michael Frerichs issued a news release Monday saying Trump’s approach will be crucial to the continuing availability of medical marijuana in Illinois.

Federal law prohibits banks from processing money used in the legal marijuana industry. Frerichs says this makes it difficult for businesses to get loans and restricts customers to cash-only transactions.

Under President Barack Obama, the Justice Department stated it would not make enforcement a priority, knowing that many states had legalized some marijuana use.

Frerichs’ letter to Trump urges him to give assurance that responsible financial institutions will not face penalties or prosecution for conducting business with state-licensed marijuana cultivators and dispensaries.

Banner image: MARCH 6, 2014: Donald Trump speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). (Shutterstock.com / Christopher Halloran) 

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After making progress on marijuana reform, the legalization movement has stalled in two New England states. Cannabis became legal in Vermont last July, but state lawmakers did not put a regulated market for marijuana in place at that time. So while adults in Vermont can possess, grow and consume cannabis, they can't buy it legally.

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