Baton Rouge, LA

What You Need to Know About Baton Rouge and Cryptocurrencies is Brilliant

Tom Handy

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Bitcoin is accepted in LouisianaBitcoin image by anncapictures from Pixabay

The Baton Rouge Louisiana GOP-controlled House adopted a digital currency resolution praising Bitcoin and encouraged the state and local government to use the cryptocurrency. The resolution was passed by the House on Wednesday and signed by Speaker Clay Schexnayder (R) on Thursday.

Speaker Schexnayder (R) formally commended Bitcoin “for its success in becoming the first decentralized trillion dollar asset” and pushes for “state and local governments to consider ways that could help them benefit from the increased use of this new technology.” thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/549982-louisiana-house-of-representatives-passes-resolution-formally-praising

Louisiana representatives said Bitcoin “could potentially replace gold as a monetary reserve.” They added that Bitcoin could be “a critical tool for citizens around the world to protect themselves from currency debasement.”
The House also praised Satoshi Nakamota, “for his contribution to economic security.”

Louisiana’s document stated, "To commend Bitcoin for its success in becoming the first decentralized trillion-dollar asset and to encourage the state and local governments to consider ways that could help them benefit from the increased use of this new technology." https://www.tweaktown.com/news/78937/louisiana-government-bitcoin-may-replace-gold-as-monetary-reserve/index.html

Louisiana State Representative Mark Wright (R-77), passed HB701 through the State House of Representatives with unanimous approval. The Bill is currently going to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection and International Affairs.

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Did Baton Rouge pass a cryptocurrency bill?Screenshot by writer from Twitter

A week ago, Coinbase was listed on the NY stock exchange as the first cryptocurrency exchange. This helps solidify the future of cryptocurrencies. Getting listed on the stock exchange has to pass several legal hurdles.

After the news was released about President Biden taxing millionaires on their investments, this caused the price of Bitcoin to drop. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies plunged by concerns on the tax as Bitcoin fell by about 7.3 percent at $49,730 by midday.

In August 2020, Louisiana passed the Virtual Currency Business Act. The Act requires virtual currency businesses to obtain a virtual currency license to conduct business in the state. This is the second state after New York to require businesses to enforce the Act.

According to the Act, no one is permitted to engage in a ‘virtual currency business activity,’ or hold itself out as being able to engage in a virtual currency business activity, with or on behalf of any resident of Louisiana, irrespective of where the person is located, unless the person is either licensed by the Louisiana Office of Financial Institutions (OFI) or exempt from such licensure.”

Under the ACT, businesses that transact and use cryptocurrencies may mean any of the following:

(a) Exchanging, transferring, or storing virtual currency or engaging in virtual currency administration, whether directly or through an agreement with a virtual currency control services vendor
(b) Holding electronic precious metals or electronic certificates representing interests in precious metals on behalf of another person or issuing shares or electronic certificates representing interests in precious metals; or
(c) Exchanging one or more digital representations of value used within one or more online games, game platforms, or family of games for either of the following: (i) virtual currency offered by or on behalf of the same publisher from which the original digital representation of value was received, or (ii) legal tender or bank credit outside the online game, game platform, or family of games offered by or on behalf of the same publisher from which the original digital representation of value was received.

This ACT applies to a resident of Louisiana and includes any person who is in the state for 183 days of the previous 165 days.

Cryptocurrency businesses have to apply with the state’s Office of Financial Institutions (OFI). Individuals who deal with less than $35,000 annually need to register with OFI.

There is a $2,000 application fee and $1,000 for annual renewal.

Louisiana’s budget analysts estimate the bill would cost the agency about $150,000 in its first year and nearly $1.3 million over five years as OFI enforcement increases.

The bill stated that with Bitcoin there is a "limited and finite and there is a maximum capacity of only twenty-one million bitcoins allowed to be produced".

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