According to the text of the bill, the new rules exempt “persons conducting business using transactions conducted in whole or in part in virtual currency” from the state’s money transmitter regulations.
The bill is notable given that it enjoyed strong grassroots support in the state, yet its top regulators largely blasted it during public hearings. During a hearing in April, advocates strongly urged legislators to adopt the measure, while representatives from the state’s Banking and Justice Departments called for it to be scuttled.
Divisions among state lawmakers on the bill could be seen during a vote in March, when it cleared the House of Representatives by a 185-170 margin. When the State Senate took up the measure in April, it passed by a 13-10 vote, public records show.
The newly-signed bill also stands out for what is effectively deregulation for the state’s trader community, whereas other states have looked to beef up rules for those who engage in similar activities. As might be expected, the effort was cheered by community members who have called for fewer regulations for those who work with digital currencies like bitcoin.
The law goes into effect on 1st August.
Old Man of the Mountain image via Wikimedia