Federal laws have banks turning away marijuana businesses

Federal laws tying marijuana money with money laundering has banks turning away marijuana businesses.

The Alaska Journal reports while marijuana businesses will be able to get licenses and make sales starting May 2016 in Alaska, the cash involved is still taboo for banks.

A designation at the same level of heroin in the Controlled Substances Act means bankers don’t want to take the risk of handling money from pot businesses.

Alaska Marijuana Industry Association vice-president Brandon Emmett is an industry representative on Alaska’s Marijuana Control Board.

He says legislation is being considered to handle the issue. In the meantime, some Colorado banks are forgoing federal insurance protection to sidestep potential money laundering violations.