Politics

California treasurer to study legal marijuana and banking

In this file photo, state Treasurer John Chiang (right) speaks at a news conference in Sacramento, Calif. Chiang's office says it plans to study banking issues related to the new voter-approved marijuana law. It says the primary concern is that the federal government still lists marijuana as a controlled substance and financial institutions typically won't serve cannabis-related businesses.
In this file photo, state Treasurer John Chiang (right) speaks at a news conference in Sacramento, Calif. Chiang's office says it plans to study banking issues related to the new voter-approved marijuana law. It says the primary concern is that the federal government still lists marijuana as a controlled substance and financial institutions typically won't serve cannabis-related businesses.
Rich Pedroncelli/AP

California Treasurer John Chiang has formed a group to study banking issues he says could hamper implementation of the voter-approved ballot measure that legalizes recreational use of marijuana in the state.

Chiang plans to discuss the Cannabis Banking Working Group in a conference call with reporters Friday morning.

The treasurer's office says the primary concern is that the federal government still lists marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act and financial institutions typically won't serve cannabis-related businesses.

California's approval of Proposition 64 on Nov. 8 represents the national legalization movement's biggest victory to date.

In general, the state will treat cannabis like alcohol. Taking effect in 2018, the law allows people 21 and older to legally possess up to an ounce of pot and grow six marijuana plants at home.