This Note considers the implications of these recent federal guidelines issued to financial institutions with respect to their freedom to do business with the state-sanctioned marijuana industry. It also discusses whether viable legal alternatives might be available to allow growth in the burgeoning marijuana markets while still remaining faithful to the federal government’s position regarding marijuana as a dangerous drug worthy of prohibition. This Note attempts to balance competing economic and governmental interests in an emerging industry that continues to evolve amid a tumultuous national landscape. This Note argues that current guidelines are excessively onerous for financial institutions and without greater flexibility, state-sanctioned marijuana businesses will not have access to vital financial services. Furthermore, without some change in the existing structure, the problems associated with all-cash businesses will continue for marijuana businesses operating legally under state law. The exclusion of valuable tax revenue from government coffers and investment capital from the marketplace these businesses generate will also persist.
Tyler T. Buckner,
Rocky Mountain High: The Impact of Federal Guidance to Banks on the Marijuana Industry,
N.C. Banking Inst.
Available at: http://scholarship.law.unc.edu/ncbi/vol19/iss1/11