The governor of Montana, Greg Gianforte, has approved a bill that largely prevents local governments in the state from establishing regulations that forbid cryptocurrency mining.
Records kept by the Montana legislature show that on May 2, Gianforte signed S.B. 178 into law after it cleared both the state House and Senate. By amending current regulations, banning discriminatory electrical rates for mining operations, and limiting taxation of cryptocurrencies used as a form of payment, the proposal essentially enshrines the rights of cryptocurrency miners in the state.
According to the most recent version of the bill, “digital asset mining has often faced difficulty with regulations at the state and local level.” The legislation was allegedly presented in part as a preventive step in reaction to specific suggestions in other jurisdictions.
For instance, in April, lawmakers from the state of Texas supported an act that would have restricted the incentives that cryptocurrency miners might receive from taking part in a scheme that would have compensated them for reducing the demand on the state’s electrical system.
In several areas, pro-mining legislation has received backing from the cryptocurrency advocacy group Satoshi Action Fund. A measure like S.B. 178 from Montana was approved by the state legislatures of Arkansas and Arkansas. Although the website of the legislature did not yet reflect such an action, Satoshi Action Fund CEO Dennis Porter claimed Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders had already signed this bill into law.
Porter stated that “at the state level, we can have a lot of progress and move things forward, and there isn’t much the federal government can do in the interim.”
The Mississippi state legislature had been considering legislation supportive of mining, but it “died” in March. A Missouri bill, according to Porter, was “a further little behind in the process” but continued to move ahead in the House.
In a budget proposal for FY2024, the Biden administration at the federal level has re-invigorated its call for a 30% tax on crypto miners. The tax may target the electrical needs of miners.