POSTED: Friday, February 14, 2014 - 4:45pm
UPDATED: Friday, February 14, 2014 - 5:28pm
The federal government has issued new rules to clarify the relationship banks can have with businesses that legally sell marijuana.
The rules were issued by the Treasury and Justice Departments and are intended to move the financial operations of legal marijuana businesses into the banking mainstream.
Banks who want to work with pot dealers must verify they're licensed and verify the products they sell and customers they serve.
The banks will also have to be alert for any signs the dealers are engaged in improper activity and report it.
Although 20 states and Washington, D.C. have passed laws allowing the sale of medical or recreational pot, production and use is still illegal under federal law.
Since the Fed's regulate banking, legal marijuana outfits have been unable to do business openly with banks.
A spokesman for the Colorado Bankers Association says the guidance is a good move, but not enough and that Congress needs to act in order to fully enable banks to serve marijuana dealers.