New York lawmakers on Thursday will hold a public hearing on the myriad banking issues facing the state's cannabis industry, the state Assembly on Wednesday announced.
The hearing, to be led by Assembly Banks Committee Chair Pamela Hunter and Economic Development, Job Creation, Commerce and Industry Committee Chair Harry Bronson, is diving into what has been a long-standing problem for the nascent industry.
Cannabis businesses — from the medicinal marijuana enterprises to the newly set up adult-use cannabis stores — are cash-only businesses. That has led to challenges for security to accessing loans and doing basic recordkeeping.
Cannabis continues to be labeled a controlled substance by the federal government even as the Biden administration has sought to ease rules for state-based businesses. In March, the Department of Justice announced it would allow for protections first outlined a decade ago to provide for a limited pathway to conducting some banking.
The issue is just one of many facing New York's cannabis industry in recent months as businesses have been slow to start. New York officials have sought to crack down on the sale of illegal cannabis under an agreement in the $229 billion state budget by boosting fines and giving regulators the ability to close businesses that sell without a license.
In the state Senate, lawmakers there recently formed a subcommittee to handle cannabis-related policy.