Report: US Congressman Announces Plans for Federal Cryptocurrency and ICO Regulation


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                U.S. Rep. Warren Davidson of Ohio announced plans to introduce a bill in the House of Representatives that would regulate ICOs and cryptocurrencies.
                <p dir="ltr"><a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/usa">U.S.</a> Rep. Warren Davidson (R) has announced plans to introduce <a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/law">legislation</a> that would clearly regulate cryptocurrencies and Initial Coin Offerings (<a href="https://it.cointelegraph.com/explained/ico-explained">ICOs</a>), local Ohio news agency Cleveland.com <a href="https://www.cleveland.com/news/2018/12/us-rep-warren-davidson-announces-legislation-to-regulate-initial-coin-offerings-at-blockchain-solutions-conference.html" rel="nofollow,noopener" target="_blank">reports</a> Dec. 3.</p><p dir="ltr">According to Cleveland.com, Davidson announced his intention to introduce new legislation at the Blockchain Solutions conference. The bill would create an &ldquo;asset class&rdquo; for <a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/cryptocurrencies">cryptocurrencies</a> and digital assets, which &ldquo;would prevent them from being classified as securities, but would also allow the federal <a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/government">government</a> to regulate initial coin offerings more effectively.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr">This development would bring clarity to U.S. crypto <a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/regulation">regulation</a>. Currently, state regulatory agencies <a href="https://cointelegraph.com/news/sec-cftc-irs-and-others-a-guide-to-us-regulating-bodies">classify</a> tokens differently in ways that place them under their jurisdiction.</p><p dir="ltr">The Securities and Exchanges Commission (<a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/sec">SEC</a>) stance is that most cryptocurrencies are securities. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (<a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/cftc">CFTC</a>), on the other hand, treats cryptocurrencies as commodities.</p><p dir="ltr">In other words, the CFTC states that Bitcoin (BTC) has more in common with gold than with currencies or securities since it is not backed by a government and does not have liabilities attached to it. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (<a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/fincen">FINCEN</a>), the agency managing anti-money laundering (<a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/aml">AML</a>) and know your client (<a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/kyc">KYC</a>) standards, views crypto as money.</p><p dir="ltr">The U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), which enforces economic sanctions, views crypto as money and blacklists wallets of sanctioned persons. Lastly, the Internal Revenue Service (<a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/irs">IRS</a>) treats cryptocurrencies as property, meaning that profits from selling them are subject to capital gains <a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/taxes">tax</a>.</p><p dir="ltr">A group of U.S. Congressional representatives <a href="https://cointelegraph.com/news/us-congressmen-call-on-sec-for-regulatory-clarity-regarding-cryptocurrencies">sent</a> a letter in September to the SEC Chairman Jay Clayton calling for &ldquo;clearer guidelines between those digital tokens that are securities.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr">The same month, over 45 representatives of major crypto companies and <a href="https://cointelegraph.com/tags/wall-street">Wall Street</a> firms attended a Congressional roundtable discussion on cryptocurrency and ICO regulation. During meeting, which was hosted by Davidson, experts expressed concerns about a lack of regulatory clarity in the industry and discussed &ldquo;token taxonomy.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr">Davidson has previously demonstrated his support for the crypto industry, <a href="https://cointelegraph.com/news/us-congressman-says-ico-market-needs-light-touch-regulation-to-provide-certainty">suggesting</a> that the ICO market needs &ldquo;light touch&rdquo; regulation. A spokesman for the U.S. representative said in November that Davidson is <a href="https://cointelegraph.com/news/ohio-congressman-wants-to-allow-icos-to-sidestep-securities-laws">working</a> on a bill that, once law, would treat ICOs as products rather than securities at the federal and state level, effectively &ldquo;sidestepping&rdquo; security laws.

As Cointelegraph reported yesterday, seven Ohio funds will hand over $300 million to blockchain startups by the end of 2021. Of this funds, $100 million will be invested by nonprofit JumpStart.



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