In all likelihood, the day isn’t far when the state of Arizona will allow its citizens to pay their taxes using Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies. The Arizona Senate has already passed a bill on 8 February 2018 to set the legislative framework for the revolutionary movement.
The bill now awaits the final nod from the House of Representatives.
If everything goes as per plan and the proposed law comes into effect, Arizona will be the first state in the United States to accept taxes in virtual currencies. Among other perks, the move is expected to play a key role in attracting businesses associated with the blockchain and/or cryptocurrency sector.
Jeff Weninger, the Arizona State Representative behind the bill, said that it was a clear signal to everyone in the US. Beyond that, Arizona is serious about becoming a force to reckon in the evolution and nurturing of blockchain technology and virtual currencies.
Weninger, a member of the Republican Party, further outlined that the ease of making payments using cryptocurrencies is absolutely easy and can be done even “while you’re watching television.”
However, he refrained from divulging any information regarding the strategy to implement such a system. This is probably one of the main reasons why Weninger had to fight tooth and nail to have the bill approved by the Senate. There were 13 votes opposing the move compared to 16 supporting it, with one no vote.
Those opposing the bill have cited the extreme volatility of crypto prices as a stumbling block in the smooth implementation of the proposed move. For example, Senator Steve Farley, a Democrat contesting for Governorship, said that the bill places the “volatility burden” of crypto prices on taxpayers that primarily use the U.S. dollar for everyday transactions.
Approving the bill with no significant changes could, therefore, lead to a scenario where the onus will be on the state to exchange the cryptocurrencies collected as tax, Farley added.
Meanwhile, Weninger has sponsored a number of related bills including one that, if approved, would disallow local and county regulation of blockchain nodes.
A number of municipalities in Switzerland, a country that accepts Bitcoin as a legal tender and is deemed by many, a haven for blockchain and virtual currencies has started accepting small taxes in Bitcoin.
The Chiasso municipality, for example, announced in 2017 that it would accept taxes of up to 250 Swiss francs (~ $267) in Bitcoin. Similarly, the city of Zug, which prides itself as the “Crypto Valley” of Switzerland, allowed citizens to pay taxes of up to 200 Swiss francs in bitcoin.
On the other hand, Japan still has not allowed payment of taxes using crypto coin despite legalizing it in 2017.
Feature image by DKNG