Following its victory in the state Senate, a piece of legislation pertaining to cryptocurrency mining rights and regulations that would prohibit discrimination against crypto miners is one step closer to becoming a reality.
The proposed laws would protect mining that takes place “at home” and strip local governments of the power to use zoning laws to stop crypto mining operations. They would also enshrine a “right to mine digital assets” and prohibit “discriminatory” electricity rates from being charged to cryptocurrency miners.
In addition to this, it forbids the imposition of additional taxes on the use of cryptocurrencies as a method of payment and proposes classifying “digital assets,” which include cryptocurrencies and nonfungible tokens, as “personal property,” in the same category as other financial products like stocks and bonds.
On February 23, the measure received a vote of 37 in favor and 13 against in the state Senate. It will now be considered for passage in the House of Representatives. In the event that it is also approved there, the last stage would be for it to be signed into law by Governor Greg Gianforte, who has the option to either sign the measure into law or veto the bill.
Mining “provides good economic value” and has the ability to “stabilize the grid and provide income for infrastructure enhancements,” as stated in the law, which outlines that Montana wants to “protect the right to mine” cryptocurrency and “provide legal clarity” for miners.
The text of the law was drafted with the assistance of the Satoshi Action Fund, which is an organization that advocates for Bitcoin (BTC).
In April of 2019, the county of Missoula in the state of Montana established regulations that forced miners to operate only in light and heavy industrial areas and compelled miners to solely utilize renewable energy. These regulations were enacted. The zoning regulation of the county would be overturned if the bill were to be enacted.
A similar law that seeks to protect crypto miners from discrimination was approved by the Mississippi state Senate at the beginning of February and is now making its way to the Mississippi House of Representatives.
In the meanwhile, the Digital Asset Mining Protection Act of Missouri was submitted to the state legislature in the middle of January with the intention of safeguarding the legal rights of cryptocurrency miners.