Arkansas: Bitcoin mining rights: The Arkansas Data Centers Act passes

Apr 20, 2023 | Posted by MadalineDunn

The Arkansas Data Centers Act was recently passed after being proposed not long ago on March 30 by Senator Joshua Bryant. The legislation seeks to regulate the Bitcoin mining industry in the state, and will allocate crypto miners the same rights as data centers. It outlines that the government should not "impose a different requirement for a digital asset mining business than is applicable to any requirement for a data center. "In addition, if passed, the legislation will also compel digital asset miners to pay applicable taxes and government fees. 

Within the legislation, a number of definitions are outlined, including "digital asset mining business," which it says refers to a collection of computers located at a single site that consumes over one megawatt (1MW) of power on average per year to generate digital assets through blockchain network security.

Specifically, the bill highlights the economic value of data centers, in that they "create jobs, pay taxes, and provide general economic value to local communities," but also require guidance for growth. "Data centers, digital currency, and blockchain technology are legal in all fifty (50) states; and guidance for future industry growth is needed in Arkansas to protect Arkansans from fraudulent business practices," the document outlines. 

Those from across the industry have responded to the news, including Satoshi Act Fund CEO and co-founder Dennis Porter, who Tweeted: "The state of Arkansas has pulled off a surprise victory and become the first in the nation to pass the 'Right to Mine' Bitcoin bill in both the House and Senate."

Arkansas is not the first state to pass a piece of legislation like this; Montana also passed a recent bill, and similar laws and regulations are on the horizon. But that's not to say that all states are passing favorable Bitcoin legislation, and simultaneously, from Texas to New York, anti-bitcoin legislation is also gaining momentum. 

Having passed in the House of Representatives and Senate, the bill has now moved to the governor's office for approval. 

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