Back in November, California voted to legalize recreational use of marijuana in the state. While this has put the California marijuana market into hyper-drive, marijuana is still a Schedule I drug, creating massive road-blocks in the cultivation, research and development and sale of the product.
Lawmakers in the state have agreed upon a joint legislature to present to Congress and the Trump Administration to take marijuana off the restricted category. The Controlled Substance Act’s Schedule I is reserved for drugs that are considered to have zero medical benefits and a high potential for abuse. This lugs marijuana right along with drugs like heroin and LSD. Shockingly, methamphetamine and cocaine are on the less restrictive Schedule II path.
The resolution doesn’t just ask for reclassification. While it’s primary focus is to take it off the restricted list, it would create a benefit for marijuana businesses trying to get bank accounts. It asks for reformation in-
“the legal commerce of marijuana or cannabis so that businesses dealing with marijuana or cannabis can use traditional banks or financial institutions for their banking needs, which would result in providing a legal vehicle for those businesses to pay their taxes.”
Because of the federal prohibition, most marijuana businesses operate in cash-only, which makes it difficult to properly pay taxes and manage their money efficiently. Reclassifying the drug would allow these businesses to operate like any other business in California, and comply to every legal inch of owning a business.
The text of the legislation will be sent to the Trump Administration for review, including the VP Mike Pence, House Speaker Paul Ryan, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.