Wyoming legislators are working together with the Wyoming Blockchain Coalition to make Wyoming the Silicon Valley of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency.
Regulators on a global scale are taking innumerable different approaches to regulating cryptocurrencies, blockchains, and other emerging ventures. China has outlawed most interaction with ICO stage and post ICO projects due to national securities laws, while the SEC hopes to take a “less heavy-handed approach to cryptocurrency regulation.”
Wyoming recently passed a set of laws to prevent cryptocurrencies from falling into state income taxes or being considered property. Alongside these regulations, Wyoming also updated their LLC regulations to make filing easier. The body leading these changes is known as the Wyoming Blockchain Coalition.
House bills 0019, 0070, 0101, and 0111 were recently passed nearly unanimously in order to make Wyoming a more friendly venue for not only crypto and blockchain businesses, but IoT and self-driving or autonomous ventures as well.
The bitcoin bill (HB 0019) and the utility token bill (HB 0070) were passed since the beginning of 2018. First, the bitcoin bill, has been put into place to prevent virtual currencies from being regulated by the Wyoming Money Transmitters Act. The latter recognizes that there is a substantial difference between security ICOs and utility ICOs.
Wyoming is among the first legislative bodies worldwide to make this determination, according to Wyoming Sen. (R) Tyler Lindholm. Wyoming seeks to cement that cryptocurrency is, in fact, a new asset class, and as such, should not be contained within preexisting regulations which cannot accurately govern its presence.
HB 0101 addresses some changes to Wyoming LLC registration laws, which increase the draw for not only blockchain business, but other prospective LLCs and corporations due to their non-existent state income and corporate income taxes. HB 0101 directly addresses e-filing and e-signing for businesses wishing to operate within their jurisdiction.
HB 0111 directly addresses personal property and other property taxation laws as they pertain to cryptographic assets. Essentially, HB0111 states that crypto assets are not subject to property taxation, contrary to the national viewpoint, which specifically classifies cryptocurrencies as property.
Sen. Lindholm hopes that the national legislators will take notice of their stance when creating national regulations for cryptocurrencies, a positive sentiment toward cryptocurrency is also held by SEC Chairman Jay Clayton, following the hearings for Munchee, a company which issued a crypto asset deemed to be a security by national laws.
Clayton issued a statement in late December, 2017 which concluded the following:
I encourage Main Street investors to be open to these opportunities, but to ask good questions, demand clear answers and apply good common sense when doing so.
The sentiment shown by both Wyoming and the SEC brings a positive hope to the minds of crypto enthusiasts and businesses alike. One struggle that lawmakers face with this emerging asset class is, how to protect consumers while also not stifling innovation in a budding industry.