A bill introduced in Arizona on January 25th, 2022, by republican senator Wendy Rogers, proposed to include Bitcoin (BTC) in the list of legal currencies accepted as legal tender, which if passed, it would allow Arizona citizens to pay their taxes, dues, as well as buy and sell goods and services using BTC.
There are already two countries in the world that have Bitcoin as their legal tenders, El Salvador and the Central African Republic (CAR), while many other countries do not accept Bitcoin as a legal tender yet, they are still trying to make it easier to include Bitcoin as an acceptable way of payment.
Previously introduced bill SB 1341 of January 25th, 2022, where Rogers was seeking approval to make Bitcoin a valid and accepted form of payment, was unsuccessful. The newly introduced bill SB 1235 hopes to adjust the definition of legal tender to include BTC. If the bill SB 1235 is to pass, Arizona will become the first U.S. state to accept Bitcoin as a legal tender, thus pushing the USA closer to adopting some cryptocurrencies as legal tenders.
It is unclear, however, whether the bill will pass, since the United States Constitution prohibits individual states from creating their own legal tenders. An interesting aspect of the bill was its reference to Bitcoin's independence from the control of central banks.
It specifies that Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer digital currency that maintains a record of transactions through the Bitcoin blockchain, generates new units of currency through the computation of mathematical problems, and is independent of a central bank.
In the event that the bill becomes law, state agencies will be able to enter into agreements with cryptocurrency issuers. These agreements will allow them to accept Bitcoin as a payment method for taxes, fines, fees, and other financial obligations.
Senator Rogers has attempted to introduce this type of legislation twice in the past, the first time in January 2022 but it was not successful on the second reading. This reintroduction highlights lawmakers' growing interest in cryptocurrencies at a time when regulations for the sector are being debated again. In particular, the U.S. Congress has several crypto-related bills pending.