A new legislation called the Money Transmitters Act has been passed in North Carolina and this regulation might wind up hindering growth among bitcoin companies in the state. The bill was originally introduced in 2001 and has received nearly unanimous support in the recent round of voting.
“You may have heard the term bitcoin; bitcoin is obviously a virtual currency. It is one of the pieces of virtual currency that will become regulated under this act. The bill itself is non-controversial: it went through banking unanimous, it went through finance unanimous. There is no known opposition,” said Representative Stephen Ross. He is a primary sponsor on the bill and also happens to hold the position of Vice President and Investment Officer for Wells Fargo Advisors.
Bitcoin Companies in Danger?
“What this bill does [is] simply [go] through the existing money transmitter act and revise the act to include the virtual currency world that is growing by leaps and bounds,” Ross added. He also referred to Apple Pay and Google Wallet in speaking about the rise of cryptocurrency operations.
Any party seeking to process payments would be required to pay $1500 for registration, as a money transmitter, and incur additional fees after an annual assessment. Bitcoin companies and other cryptocurrency operations are officially designated as currency in this bill, and therefore fall under the blanket of regulation.
Bitcoin regulation is also being voted upon in California and this might pose a threat to bitcoin companies in the state as well. Fees are steeper and the bar is far higher in the proposed California bill, prompting resistance from owners of bitcoin companies in the area.
“Attempts to impose further restrictions on the purchase, sale, or use of bitcoin by private businesses and individuals would serve to limit access and prevent people from gaining the full range of benefits provided by this innovative technology,” remarked PawnCoin founder John Light.