Waters schedules committee votes on cannabis banking, CFPB bills

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WASHINGTON — House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters, D-Calif., has scheduled a vote next week on a bill aimed at enabling banks to provide services to legal marijuana businesses, setting the stage for the legislation to advance to the House floor.

The committee will also vote on a bill to undo policies carried out by former acting Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Mick Mulvaney, which Democrats say weakened the agency.

The committee is considering the Secure and Fair Enforcement — or SAFE — Banking Act. The bill would make it illegal for a federal banking regulator to penalize banks that accept FDIC-insured deposits from marijuana businesses in states where the substance is legal.

The chief sponsor, Rep. Ed Perlmutter, D-Colo., has pushed for the bill for six years as more states have legalized marijuana. It is co-sponsored by Reps. Denny Heck, D-Wash., Steve Stivers, R-Ohio, and Warren Davidson, R-Ohio.

The committee is also considering the Consumers First Act, which is sponsored by Waters. The bill would limit the number of political appointees the CFPB can hire, restore supervision and enforcement authority in the agency’s fair-lending office, and resume supervision for the Military Lending Act, among other things.

Other bills to be marked up by the committee include legislation to establish a Treasury Department rewards program for individuals providing information related to stolen assets linked to foreign government corruption, a bill to require the Securities and Exchange Commission to conduct investor testing when developing disclosure rules, and a bill aimed at tackling homelessness.

Any of the bills approved by the committee likely would be subject to review by the House Rules Committee before the full chamber votes.

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