Vermont may be known for more than its dairy farms and green mountains these days. This week the state of Vermont’s Governor has signed a new bill into law that applies virtual currencies to ‘permissible investments’ for money transmission businesses regulated by the Department of Financial Regulation.
Virtual Currencies Are Now Permissible Investments in the Eyes of Vermont Lawmakers
On May 4 the Governor of Vermont, Phil Scott, signed a bill into law that recognizes bitcoin as a “permissible investment” for money transmission operations. Many bitcoin proponents believe the state is becoming an innovative region as Vermont authorities have crafted quite a few bitcoin and blockchain friendly statutes.
Vermont’s latest amendment clearly defines bitcoin and alternative digital currencies as a “means of stored value that can be a medium of exchange, a unit of account, and store of value. Has an equivalent value in money or acts as a substitute for money and also may be centralized or decentralized.”
As far as virtual currencies are concerned “permissible investments shall be held in trust for the benefit for the purchasers and holders of the licensee’s outstanding payment instruments and stored value obligations,” explains Vermont bill 182.
Vermont Laws Considered Bitcoin and Blockchain Friendly
Last year former Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin also progressed the state’s legislature with an economic bill that applies to all blockchains. The bill H.868 recognizes any fact, document or record certified on a blockchain which can be legally admissible in a court of law. The legislation detailed these types of records are deemed as “authentic” within business and litigation matters. The state of Arizona has a similar bill in motion which aims to legally recognize blockchain based digital signatures and smart contracts.
Vermont bill 182 furthers the state’s friendly nature towards cryptocurrencies as traditional businesses must hold a degree of permissible investments. Now if a company chooses they can hold bitcoin or another digital currency, but “only to the extent of outstanding transmission obligations received by the licensee in an identical denomination of virtual currency.”
Currently, there are roughly nine states working with digital currency and blockchain-related legislation. U.S. lawmakers that are implementing laws towards cryptocurrency users and businesses include representatives from Florida, Vermont, Arizona, North Dakota, California, Illinois, Hawaii, New Hampshire, Nevada, and Maine. Furthermore, a new congressional blockchain group has been created to further research for laws created on the Federal level.