Governor Katie Hobbs’ decision could see mining laws decided below state level.
Arizona Governor Katie Hobbs vetoed legislation that aims to prevent local governments from taxing crypto mining operations in a letter published on April 12.
Veto aims to allow crypto mining taxes, fees
Hobbs’ letter indicates that she has vetoed a bill designated SB 1236. That bill aims to ensure that taxes and fees imposed on blockchain mining node operators are a statewide concern — and not a matter that can be decided at city, town, or county levels.
Hobbs wrote that the bill “prevents local policymaking concerning an emerging and potentially energy-intensive economic activity.” She added that the bill fails to engage with local stakeholders. As such, her veto could allow for finer regulation of crypto mining.
Hobbs also wrote that the bill has an overly broad definition of blockchain technology
Though it is unclear whether any part of Arizona has attempted imposed crypto bans below the state level, localities in other states such as North Carolina have done so.
Meanwhile, states including Montana, Arkansas, and Mississippi have taken steps toward ensuring that discriminatory laws against mining are eliminated entirely.
Bill was originally sponsored by Rogers
SB 1236 was initially sponsored by Arizona Senator Wendy Rogers, a member of the Republican party who is known for her attempts at crypto legislation.
Rogers recently sponsored another high-profile cryptocurrency bill numbered SB 1235. That bill, introduced in January, aims to recognize Bitcoin as legal tender in Arizona. The bill has not been vetoed, nor has it been enacted into law, as of March 2023.
Rogers has also introduced two other relevant bills. One bill, SB 1239, aims to allow state agencies to accept crypto as payment. Another, SB 1240, aims to exempt cryptocurrency from property taxes. Those bills are recorded as having crossed over, meaning that they have passed Arizona’s Senate and can now be considered by the House.
Hobbs, a member of the Democratic party, has also vetoed several other bills unrelated to cryptocurrency in recent weeks and months. It is unclear why she has refrained from vetoing Roger’s other crypto bills, or whether she will do so in the future.
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Author: Mike Dalton