Congresswoman Rosen calls for protection of Nevada's marijuana industry
LAS VEGAS (KSNV) —
As marijuana sales continue to break records in Nevada, the industry is operating under a cloud of uncertainty when it comes to the federal government.
However, Congresswoman Jacky Rosen is calling for more protections for legal pot businesses.
As Nevada pot sales continue to soar, Rosen met with workers at the Apothecary Shoppe on Flamingo. The dispensary is feeling the surge of sales, but workers say the biggest issue they’re concerned about is banking since the industry operates entirely on cash.
While recreational pot is legal in Nevada and a handful of other states, federal rules keep dispensaries from working with banks – which industry experts say puts workers and customers at risk.
“It’s dangerous. It’s scary and that’s why I’ve chosen not to deal with money – I already have enough responsibility dealing with the product,” said Andrea Hopper, who is in charge of inventory and compliance at the Apothecary Shoppe.
It’s a vulnerability not lost on Rosen as she met with industry workers and leaders Tuesday morning.
"We have to protect you guys," Rosen told Hopper during a private tour of the dispensary.
Rosen also told News 3 that before the federal government could consider taking marijuana off its list of 'dangerous drugs' and de-scheduling marijuana, Congress should first act to protect the workers in states with legalized marijuana – both recreational and medical.
“We can try to take those steps for safe banking, for tax rules to make sure these businesses are treated the same as every other business – and allowing studies for medical marijuana to go forward,” said Rosen, adding that as more states legalize marijuana – protecting pot businesses is going to become a bipartisan issue.