The Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed House Bill 331 sponsored by Representative Rosemary Brown (R-Monroe/Pike) allowing incentive-based savings programs and protecting financial institutions from offering cannabis-related business services.
Prize-linked savings accounts (PLSA), also referred to as “savings promotions raffles,” incentivize saving money by entering depositors into a raffle or lottery. For example, Michigan’s PLSA program “Save to Win” was created in 2009 as a full-scale model and has since expanded to include over ten states.
Per the Save to Win website, “When you save $25 in your Save to Win savings account, you earn a chance to win one of over 150 monthly $25 prizes. Each entry also earns you the chance to win one of our quarterly prizes of up to $5000.”
Past research found that when PLSA programs were implemented, many of the participants had not been savers prior. In a quote shared by CU Solutions Group, VP of Customer Advocacy Carl Casper from Connex Credit Union in Connecticut said, “Save to Win fits in perfectly with our financial advocacy mission and supports our efforts of encouraging our members to save and promoting thrift, which is the principle on which credit unions were founded.”
Said Rep. Brown in an earlier communication, “My legislation works to bring stronger attention to families and offer additional opportunities to win prizes etc. while households build their reserve accounts and prepare for emergency needs.”
The bill also provides protection for financial institutions to offer services to state-legal cannabis businesses by protecting against state penalties. Per the CrossState Credit Union Association, the credit union association serving both Pennsylvania and New Jersey, the bill “codifies the existing climate of regulatory non-enforcement.”
The bill now rests with Governor Tom Wolf (D-PA).