ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - The Alaska and Hawaii attorneys general have asked Congress to allow banks and marijuana businesses to cross paths.
Alaska's Jahna Lindemuth and Hawaii's Doug Chin were among 19 attorneys general who urged U.S. lawmakers on Tuesday to move forward with legislation allowing states with marijuana businesses to use the banking system.
Chin says banks and other institutions are currently hindered by federal law from working with marijuana businesses. He says this creates a cash-only, "grey market" that hurts law enforcement and tax collections.
The officials' legislation would provide a safe harbor for banks and other institutions that work with the marijuana industry.
The officials say their legislation would not only protect public safety, but would also result in billions of dollars being infused into the banking industry.