The IRS may not be ready for this as yet, but in the not-so-distant future, you may soon be able to pay your local and state taxes with bitcoins.
At least if you’re in Utah or New Hampshire, where tax law proposals are proceeding through the legislatures seeking to allow citizens to pay their taxes with bitcoins.
Even New York City Council is considering a local law to
amend the administrative code to allow for acceptance of bitcoins for the
payment of fines and fees.
The bill in the Utah Legislature (HCR006) looks to be
the winner in the race to be the first major government within the U.S. to
officially enshrine bitcoins in their laws as an acceptable mode of payment for
government services and taxes.
The Utah House passed the bill a couple of days ago, and it
has today received a favorable recommendation from the Utah Senate Revenue and
The New Hampshire bill (HB
0552) is still making its way through the House, and a couple of days of House
public hearings on the bill grabbed a lot of ink last month.
The NYC local law amendment (Int
0661) was introduced by City Council Member Mark Levine and has been
referred to the City Council’s Committee on Finance.
One of the big benefits of accepting a crypto-currency like Bitcoin
as payment is that governments would save millions of dollars in processing
fees. There is a big difference between the transaction costs of accepting
Bitcoin and the processing fees the credit card companies charge.
Regardless of which of these bills becomes law first, none
of them will be the first government body in the United States to accept
payments in bitcoins. That honor goes to the City of Madeira Beach, FL, which
last year became the first municipality to officially embrace bitcoin.
The city’s resolution to become a “Bitcoin Beach” passed
following a town hall at which bitcoin payment processor BitPay presented the
benefits of bitcoin to local business owners – the elimination of processing
fees, security against fraud and chargebacks, and appeal to global and
“The city of Madeira Beach is opening its arms to the global
bitcoin community,” said City Manager Shane Crawford. “We want bitcoin users to
know that they can pay for their entire vacation with bitcoin here.“
“We hope that other cities follow Madeira Beach’s example in
supporting the growth of bitcoin,” said BitPay Executive Chairman Tony
Gallippi. “For cities that attract international visitors, accepting bitcoin is
a great way to boost sales.”
Photo credit - Jason