Although this winter continues to test the case for Bitcoin (BTC) advocacy, some lawmakers are scrambling to put their names on the list of hot cryptocurrencies among the likes of US Senators Cynthia Loomis and Pat Toomey. State Senator Wendy Rogers, 68, has introduced two bold bills in the Arizona legislature. One is focused on making legal tender for BTC in the state of the United States. If passed into law, BTC would have the same status as the US dollar, becoming an accepted medium of exchange for paying debts, public fees, taxes and dues in the state. The bill isn’t Rogers’ first attempt at legal tender for BTC, with a similar bill set to be defeated in 2022.
Rogers also co-sponsored a bill that seeks to make cryptocurrency a tax-exempt property in the state. Along with Senators Sonny Borrelli and Justin Wadsack, Rogers proposed that Arizona residents be allowed to decide whether to amend the state constitution regarding property taxes. Should the measure pass the legislature, voters could choose to make digital currencies — specifically tokens that are not “a representation of the US dollar or foreign currency” — tax-free.
Although not daring, another important bill was introduced to the New York State Assembly. The bill would allow state agencies to accept cryptocurrency as a form of payment for state-imposed fines, civil penalties, taxes, fees, and other payments. The bill does not require state agencies to accept cryptocurrency as payment, but it does clarify that state agencies can legally agree to accept such payments and that courts must enforce such agreements.
Panama’s Supreme Court will decide the fate of crypto legislation
Panamanian President Laurentino Cortizo has sent last year’s encryption law to the Supreme Court for review, claiming that the so-called “cryptography law” is unenforceable and violates a basic principle of the constitution. President Cortizo also argued that the bill was approved through an improper procedure after he partially vetoed the legislation in June 2022. At the time, the president argued that the bill needed more work to comply with new regulations recommended by the Financial Action Task Force. To improve financial transparency and prevent money laundering.
South Korea to deploy cryptocurrency tracking system in 2023
South Korea’s Ministry of Justice has announced plans to introduce a cryptographic tracking system to counter money laundering initiatives and recover funds linked to criminal activities. The Virtual Currency Tracking System will be used to monitor transaction history, extract transaction-related information, and verify the source of funds before and after the transfer. While the system is scheduled to be deployed in the first half of 2023, the South Korean ministry shared plans to develop an independent tracking and analysis system in the second half of the year.
The US Securities Regulatory Commission is investigating Wall Street over cryptocurrency custody
The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is investigating traditional Wall Street investment advisors who may offer custody of digital assets to their clients without the proper qualifications. Much of the SEC’s effort in this inquiry is examining whether registered investment advisors have met rules and regulations related to custody of client crypto assets. By law, investment advisory firms must be “qualified” to provide custody services to clients and comply with the custody safeguards set out in the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.