Story at a glance
- Colorado will begin accepting cryptocurrency for tax payments starting this summer.
- Gov. Jared Polis (D) said driver’s licenses, hunting licenses and other state fees will also begin accepting crypto as a valid form of payment.
- Currently, there are 17 states that have enacted legislation or adopted resolutions related to cryptocurrency.
Colorado will soon become the first state in the country to accept cryptocurrency for tax payments and may expand crypto to other state businesses like driver’s license and hunting license fees too.
Gov. Jared Polis (D) signed the Digital Token Act, which will allow Colorado residents to pay their taxes with cryptocurrency by this summer. In a recent interview with CNBC, Polis explained that the state’s expenses are all in dollars, so payments made with crypto would be converted back to dollars by an intermediary.
“We are getting a payment provider to accept crypto equivalent and deposit the dollars into the state’s treasury for that amount. It is kind of like credit card payments, with the bonus that there are no returned payments,” said Polis in a tweet.
Crypto is expected to be expanded in use in Colorado’s government, with Polis saying driver’s licenses, hunting licenses and other fees will also accept crypto as payment.
The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) describes cryptocurrency as a digital or virtual currency that is not issued or backed by the U.S. government or any other government or central bank. That means crypto isn’t subject to things like transaction fees or geography and can be completely anonymous.
Polis has been a big proponent of crypto, telling Wired last month crypto can be more convenient for people to use and sets a “symbolic” message that it is in fact a validated form of payment in the state like credit cards.
Under Polis’ administration, Colorado established its first chief blockchain architect, Thaddeus Batt, as part of the state’s Blockchain Council. His role includes expanding blockchain technology within Colorado government agencies, including policy and regulatory clarity, banking services and support, taxation of digital assets and more.
Colorado isn’t the only state integrating crypto into state business. The NCSL says 33 states and Puerto Rico had pending legislation in 2021 and 17 states enacted legislation or adopted resolutions related to crypto.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams (D) recently announced he was converting his first paycheck into Bitcoin and Ethereum via Coinbase, the country’s largest cryptocurrency exchange. Filings from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office also indicated that national retail giant Walmart may also be planning to create its own cryptocurrency and collection of nonfungible tokens, known as NFTs.
The use of crypto prompted the FBI to form a new team that is dedicated to the matter, appointing prosecutor Eun Young Choi, as the agency’s first director of the National Cryptocurrency Enforcement Team (NCET).
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