The National Cannabis Roundtable (NCR), a leading organization of cannabis companies committed to cannabis reform, has announced the addition of former Congressman Ed Perlmutter to its federal policy leadership team. Perlmutter, who represented Colorado’s 7th Congressional District and is known for introducing the Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act, will bring his expertise and experience to the NCR as a policy advisor.
Perlmutter’s Role and Vision
Perlmutter, who retired from Congress in 2023, said he remained as committed as ever to fighting for common-sense cannabis reforms and the enactment of the SAFE Banking Act, which would allow cannabis businesses to access banking services without fear of federal prosecution. He said he was excited to work with the NCR, which has been a leader in reform efforts on Capitol Hill, to move forward SAFE and many other bipartisan, common-sense cannabis measures.
The SAFE Banking Act, which Perlmutter first introduced in 2013, has gained significant bipartisan support over the years, passing the House of Representatives four times, most recently in 2021. However, the bill has faced obstacles in the Senate, where it has not received a vote. The NCR and other cannabis advocates hope that Perlmutter’s involvement will help push the bill over the finish line and secure President Biden’s signature.
Perlmutter said he never could have imagined that within a decade of introducing SAFE Banking, 38 states would legalize cannabis programs and more than 300 bipartisan members of Congress would vote for the bill. He also said he never could have imagined that that would not be enough to get it done. He expressed his frustration with the current situation, where cannabis businesses are forced to operate in cash, creating safety and security risks for them and their communities.
NCR’s Mission and Team
The NCR is an organization of cannabis companies that collectively advocate for cannabis reform at the federal level. Its mission is to nurture the industry, protect consumers, and foster social equity. The NCR supports policies that would end the federal prohibition of cannabis, create a fair and equitable tax system, promote research and innovation, and ensure access to safe and quality products.
The NCR’s federal policy leadership team consists of prominent and influential figures from various backgrounds and sectors. The honorary co-chairs of the organization are former Secretary of Health Kathleen Sebelius and former Speaker John Boehner, who have both been vocal supporters of cannabis reform. Other policy advisors include former Senator Cory Gardner, another former lead sponsor of the SAFE Banking Act, and former Deputy Attorney General Jim Cole, who authored the famous Cole memo that guided federal enforcement priorities on cannabis.
Saphira Galoob, the executive director of the NCR, said it was truly an honor and a privilege to have Perlmutter join the team. She praised him as the architect of SAFE Banking and thanked him for his years of dedication to the cause. She said she looked forward to having his additional expertise on the team as they continue to guide legislative efforts to advance federal cannabis reforms.