Earlier today blockchain evangelist Caitlin Long announced on LinkedIn that HB-70, the Utility Token ICO bill passed the Senate and is now on the Governors desk. We reported on this bill last month when it passed the house. This marks a huge step for ICO’s and has the potential to create a cryptocurrency hub in the state with a dearth of new economic activity.
HB-70 is proposed law in Wyoming which aims to tackle the ambiguity surrounding the meaning of a “utility token”. While the issue has been tackled in the past by the infamous SEC memo , much ambiguity still surrounds the definition with many deferring to the Howey test derived from a supreme court case in the 1940’s to determine whether or not a token constitutes a security. This ambiguity has landed more than a few founders in jail and the federal governments inaction has left it up to the states to regulate what constitutes a “utility token”.
In comes HB-70 which offers a clear, unambiguous definition. It states that in order for a token to be classified as a utility token, or “open blockchain token”, it must meet the following conditions:
This is the fourth bill in Wyoming to pass the Senate out of 5 proposed in 2018. While this bill focuses on utility tokens it’s just one of a broader set of bills aimed at making Wyoming what Long calls “A Haven for Blockchain”.
Wyoming and Delaware’s race to become the blockchain capital are sure to set a precedent with other states vying for a slice of the cryptocurrencies ever-expanding market cap. These bills aren’t law yet but given the Governor’s support, they are sure to pass. A bigger risk is that the SEC could nullify HB-70. Time will tell as the SEC navigates the new, volatile, and often dangerous cryptocurrency markets.
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