If you’re interested in how U.S. governments are approaching Bitcoin, there’s a new signal on the horizon as analysts talk today about the announcement of Ohio’s new Bitcoin tax collection payment system.
Using an online portal called OhioCrypto, Ohio businesses will be able to make various types of tax payments using Bitcoin, including a wide range of payments for cigarette and tobacco taxes, electricity use taxes, pass-through entity tax, sales tax, withholding tax and more.
Although Bitcoin is the only cryptocurrency currently accepted in the Ohio crypto system, state officials hope to add more options over time – we’d expect the addition of coins like ETH, XRP and TRX…
Many attribute this groundbreaking move toward cryptocurrencies to Josh Mandel, treasurer of the state of Ohio. Mandel has been vocal about his support for Bitcoin and the idea that digital cryptocurrencies offer efficiencies and benefits for payment transactions.
An FAQ provided by Mandel’s office shows some of the philosophy in play:
“Treasurer Mandel believes in leveraging cutting-edge technology to provide Ohioans more options and ease while interfacing with state government. The Treasurer’s office is also working to help make Ohio a national leader in blockchain technology.”
The move toward Bitcoin makes Ohio a trendsetter. Some other states have tried and failed to pass legislation legitimizing Bitcoin as a form of tax payment. Reporting at Zerohedge, for example, shows how the state of Georgia introduced a similar bill only to have it die in committee.
By contrast, Ohio has its online payment portal ready to go.
“Under the leadership of Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, taxpayers are able to pay their state business taxes with cryptocurrency for the first time anywhere in America,” reads the announcement on the OhioCrypto web site. “Ohio has become the first state in the United States, and one of the first governments in the world, to accept cryptocurrency. From mom and pop coffee shops to Fortune 100 companies, businesses now have the ability to pay their taxes with OhioCrypto.com.”
Government isn’t the only place that Bitcoin is being promoted, either. In the retail world, Bitcoin holders are enjoying more access to market choices. As mentioned in this article in The Street from April, these choices are expanding rapidly in many industries.
Look for the success of Ohio’s portal to become a bellwether for what other states can do to usher in the age of cryptocurrency in state offices.