For years now the cannabis industry has been looking for a safe place to stash its cash. As more and more states legalize the herb in one form or another, the pile of cash also grows larger. In fact, the cannabis industry already generates billions of dollars in revenue per year with nowhere to put its gains but under the proverbial mattress.
With the federal government not yet ready to recognize marijuana as a legal substance, most federally regulated banks are very reluctant to do business with the cannabis industry. Some banks have tried to step up, but ultimately the lack of federal backing has thus far made it a losing proposition.
However, help appears to be on the way — help in the form of a new banking system run by an amalgamation of 560 sovereign Native American nations.
Anthony Rivera, a Harvard-educated leader in California’s Acjachemen Nation, wants tribal nations to legalize marijuana and call on their years of experience of managing casinos to establish a new banking system that can adequately serve the cannabis industry.
“The Indian casinos are basically small little banks,” Rivera said. “They receive deposits in the form of gaming, and they manage that cash in a way that is highly regulated with commissioners and regulators.”
Rivera also runs an organization called CannaNative that aims to link the leaders of tribal nations, who have been given autonomy by the U.S. government to establish their own regulated marijuana markets.
The overall lack of current banking options for the cannabis industry has created a large need for a banking system to deal with all the cash rolling in. Therefore, this proposed banking system by the combined prowess of the nation’s Native American tribes could be seen as the only viable option at this time… That is until the federal government changes its tune. Then the more established banks will most likely get in the mix. It’s just too much cash to pass up.
With the number of new states expected to vote on additional legalization issues in the upcoming elections, the cannabis industry banking woes will only get worse.