Governor Announces State To Help Medical Marijuana And Hemp Industries Get Access To Banking

Governor Announces State To Help Medical Marijuana And Hemp Industries Get Access To Banking

Local News

According to a press release, Governor Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday (July 3rd) directed the Department of Financial Services to encourage New York State-Chartered Banks and Credit Unions to provide banking services for New York’s regulated medical marijuana and industrial hemp businesses.

The Department of Financial Services guidance encourages New York State chartered banks and credit unions to consider establishing banking relationships with medical marijuana-related businesses that are operating in New York in full compliance with all applicable New York State laws and regulations. This also encourages New York State-chartered banks and credit unions to support the development of industrial hemp businesses statewide, continuing this significant economic development goal of New York State.

“The ability to establish a banking relationship is a challenge that legal industries face unlike no other,” Governor Cuomo said. “As the federal government continues to sow discord surrounding the medical marijuana and industrial hemp businesses, New York has made significant progress in creating a supportive economic development and regulatory landscape for these companies.”

The New York Compassionate Care Act signed by Governor Cuomo in 2014 provides patients suffering debilitating symptoms and diseases access to medical marijuana, under strict requirements regulated by the Department of Health. And signed legislation in 2017 to amend New York law to ensure that industrial hemp will be considered an agricultural product and that it will be treated the same way as other crops and seed.

New York law permits the cultivation of industrial hemp and federal law permits the growing and cultivation of industrial hemp for certain limited research purposes.

These requirements are consistent with requirements for other lawful businesses to obtain banking relationships, and for financial institutions to operate in a safe and sound manner.

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