The state of Wyoming is continuing to welcome blockchain startups, this time with the approval of a bill that will allow blockchain and crypto startups to operate within what is called a regulatory “sandbox” for a legislative vote.
On Friday, the Wyoming House Committee on Minerals, Business and Economic Development approved its financial technology sandbox bill in a unanimous 9-0 vote. If the bill is passed into law, it would authorize the state to allow startups to test new technologies and subsequently determine if and how they would function within existing regulatory frameworks.
The bill, which applies to financial technology as a whole, states:
“Financial technology is undergoing a transformational period in which new technologies are providing great automation, connectivity and transparency for financial products and services [however] existing legal frameworks are restricting financial technology innovation because these frameworks were largely established at a time when technology was not a fundamental component of financial products and services.”
In other words, laws are behind technology, and for that reason, they are holding technology back. The bill seeks to remedy this situation by allowing for technological innovation to occur in a sort of testing environment (this is what is meant by “sandbox”) before the regulatory implications are weighed. This would create a more welcoming environment for businesses to operate.
Notably, the bill mentions “blockchain” four separate times, including a definition of the term, and specifically makes mention of the technology as one that would be welcomed for testing.
Despite the optimism the bill brings to the blockchain community, it is only in the first of thirteen stages, though it can be argued that its creation is the most important of those steps.
The legislative session is slated to end in March, and it is possible that the process will be completed by then. Should the bill pass, Wyoming might become a haven for U.S.-based blockchain startups.