Sen. Jacky Rosen Continues To Push For Marijuana Reforms: Demands Federal SBA Loans For Legal Cannabis Companies

Senator Jacky Rosen (D-Nev) sent a letter recently urging the appropriations committee to provide licensed marijuana businesses with access to Small Business Administration loans, reported Nevada Appeal

Cannabis companies are currently banned from accessing SBA loans, because weed is still considered a Schedule 1 substance, and therefore illegal under federal law. 

In the letter, Rosen requested the committee “include bill language prohibiting SBA from excluding such state-legal cannabis businesses from participating in or benefiting from SBA’s entrepreneurial development programs,” she said.

 “Consequently, small businesses in states with some form of legal cannabis must choose between remaining eligible for SBA financing and support and participating in or doing business with a rapidly-growing legal industry.” 

The letter came after Rosen joined a group of Senators in demanding appropriations committee members enable non-profit child care centers to access to the same SBA products and support that for-profit child care operators enjoy.

Senator Rosen pointed to the cannabis legalization trend and the economic benefits it is providing. “In 2021, states collected over $3 billion in tax revenue from legal cannabis sales, and that number is expected to grow as more states legalize cannabis this year,” she wrote.

Thanks to current SBA policy, “small businesses in states with some form of legal cannabis must choose between remaining eligible for SBA financing and support and participating in or doing business with a rapidly-growing and legal industry.

“We strongly support SBA making all of its programs open and available to all state-legal cannabis small businesses,” the letter continued. “We, therefore, ask the Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government to include bill language in your forthcoming legislation to help extend SBA loan and entrepreneurship programs to cannabis small businesses legally operating in states that allow the sale and use of cannabis for medical or recreational purposes.”

Rosen's Previous Cannabis Reform Efforts 

This is not the first time Rosen has pushed for important cannabis reforms. In May, she was among the leaders of a group of 24 senators from both sides of the aisle who lined up behind an idea that the bipartisan Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act would help cannabis-related businesses, support innovation, create jobs, and strengthen public safety.

"The cannabis industry has become a powerful job creator and a significant generator of tax revenue," lawmakers, led by Sens. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Rosen wrote in a letter to the congressional leaders. "However, financial institutions are often reluctant to transact with cannabis-related businesses, even in states that have some form of legalized cannabis, due to legal and regulatory risks arising from inconsistent federal and state laws. Allowing cannabis businesses operating legally and in compliance with state law to access financial services without federal reprisal would address public safety and compliance challenges, helping communities reduce cash-motivated crimes."

The letter was also signed by Sens. Steve Daines (R-MT), Gary Peters (D-MI), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Dan Sullivan (R-AK), Angus King (I-ME), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Mark Kelly (D-AZ), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Ben Ray Luján (D-NM), Patty Murray (D-WA), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Alex Padilla (D-CA), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), John Hickenlooper, (D-CO) and Chris Coons (D-DE).

Photo: Courtesy of Frederick Schilling, U.S. House  via Wikimedia Commons


Market News and Data brought to you by Benzinga APIs
Posted In: CannabisNewsMarketsMedia. Steve DainesAlex PadillaAngus KingBen Ray LujánCatherine Cortez MastoChris CoonsCynthia LummisDan SullivanGary PetersJacky RosenJeff MerkleyJohn HickenlooperKevin CramerKyrsten SinemaLisa MurkowskiMark KellyMartin HeinrichMazie HironoMichael BennetNevada AppealPatrick LeahyPatty MurrayRobert MenendezSAFE Banking ActSBA loan and cannabis businessesTammy DuckworthTim Kaine
Benzinga simplifies the market for smarter investing

Trade confidently with insights and alerts from analyst ratings, free reports and breaking news that affects the stocks you care about.

Join Now: Free!

The Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference is coming to Florida

The Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference is returning to Florida, in a new venue in Hollywood, on April 16 and 17, 2024. The two-day event at The Diplomat Beach Resort will be a chance for entrepreneurs, both large and small, to network, learn and grow. Renowned for its trendsetting abilities and influence on the future of cannabis, mark your calendars – this conference is the go-to event of the year for the cannabis world.

Get your tickets now on – Prices will increase very soon!