New York State Assembly Proposes Bill to Legalize Crypto Payments At State Agencies

Jan. 30, 2023
BY Mah Ru
New York State Assembly Proposes Bill to Legalize Crypto Payments At State Agencies

Cryptocurrency adoption in the US is entering an all-new level with state agencies about to accept crypto payments. On Thursday, January 26, the New York State Assembly received a bill proposal to legitimize crypto payments for fines, fees, taxes, civil penalties, and other state levies. 

Clyde Vanel, a well-known crypto proponent and Democratic Party member, introduced the bill during a legislative session on Thursday, January 26. Clyde Vanel represents the 33rd Senate District of New York and is known for sponsoring crypto-friendly bills. He co-sponsored the Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Study Task Force bill designated S8343.

Details of The Newly New York State Proposed Crypto Bill

The designation for the newly proposed crypto legislation bill is Assembly Bill A2532. It aims to establish cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum, and Bitcoin Cash as legitimate payment means in all state agencies in New York City. 

In detail, it proposes that the law allows state agencies to partner with relevant crypto entities. The partnership will enable them to accept cryptocurrencies as payment for rent, rates, charges, revenue, taxes, civil penalties, and any form of levis, dues, or financial obligations. 

Bill A2532 was transferred to New York State Assembly Committee for review after introduction. It must pass through Assembly and have the governor’s approval to become law. Following the normal legislative process, the bill would pass through the New York Assembly and the governor’s approval before it can qualify as a law.

Arizona State Legislature Receives Similar Bill

Wendy Rogers, Arizona State Senator, proposed a bill on January 25 during a legislative session. The bill is similar to Clyde Vanel’s A2532. Rogers, a Republican, wants Bitcoin to be a legal tender and all state agencies to accept crypto as payment.

Rogers’ Republican colleagues in Arizona State Assembly, J.D. Mesnard and Jeff Weninger co-sponsored the bill. Rogers’ proposed bill, which they designated as SB1235, stirred a heated argument during the legislative session. No one is certain when the official discussion regarding the legislation would hold, but hopefully, a date will come soon.

However, a Senator in the State of Arizona had earlier introduced a similar bill, SB1341, which other legislators rejected during a second reading. It is uncertain if these bills will receive approval, considering the sections of the US constitution that prohibits states from establishing their legal tender.

New York Crypto Regulation So Far

Given the accelerated growth of cryptocurrencies over the past years, many states in the United States have explored various ways to be part of the growing industry. Some states like California and Nevada responded to the fast-growing industry by enacting friendly bills to promote mainstream crypto adoption at various business levels. 

However, states like Hawaii and New York took a different approach. They implemented stringent crypto regulatory rules to protect citizens against the risks associated with cryptocurrency investments. 

The New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) set up a crypto regulation called BitLicense in 2014 to oversee the licensing of crypto businesses. BitLicense came into effect on August 8, 2015.

Following BitLincense’s implementations, some supporters welcomed the idea as a transparent, albeit strict framework upon which crypto may gain mainstream credibility. But others criticized the idea as being harsh and severe. 

New York State is undoubtedly the financial center of the United States due to its business hub, New York City and Wall Street. Therefore the state must consider stringent approaches to protect its citizens against risks in the diverse and complex financial markets. A few BitLicenses issued by NYDFS led to suspended crypto operations in NY by end of 2016. 

But the crypto industry has continued to evolve even with the government’s stringent approach to crypto regulations. Today, several companies have received approval to operate under New York crypto regulations, and these firms have grown to become primary compliance accomplishments for many in the cryptocurrency industry.

The White House Releases Roadmap For Crypto Regulations

The cryptocurrency regulatory framework is still work-in-progress at the federal level after President Biden’s order in 2022 to prevent risks associated with crypto. The White House published a roadmap to mitigate the risks involved in cryptocurrency trading and operations on 27. Roadmap cites Terra implosion as the main cause for crypto regulation after a wave of insolvencies.

The roadmap primarily addresses Congress to assist in the formulation of an appropriate legislative regulation to oversee cryptocurrencies. The rules, when approved, would guide crypto operations throughout President Biden’s tenure. The roadmap is the administration’s first all-inclusive crypto regulatory framework.

Biden admin releases roadmap for responsible digital asset development per March 2022 order. The document also noted that executive agencies would increase crypto law enforcement by providing new guidelines. Furthermore, government agencies will develop public awareness programs to educate consumers on the risks associated with crypto investments.

It is uncertain how these regulations would affect the proposed legitimization of crypto payments in New York and other states. Rules change digital asset trading in crypto, impacting narrative when applied.

Mah Ru

Associate editor & news writer