Wyoming Stable Token Act passes without governor’s signature

By MARK DAVIS Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange
Posted 3/30/23

Information on Wyoming working to establish a digital coin

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Wyoming Stable Token Act passes without governor’s signature


POWELL — Wyoming still has a chance to be the first state to have an official stablecoin in the cryptocurrency financial sector.

On Friday, March 17, Gov. Mark Gordon allowed the Wyoming Stable Token Act to become law without his signature. He said after vetoing a similar bill following last year’s legislative session, the sponsors worked to resolve many of his concerns. “Nevertheless, I continue to harbor some reservations about the potential impact this program may have on Wyoming’s hard fought reputation as a thoughtful and strong leader in the world of digital assets,” Gordon said in a letter to Secretary of State Chuck Gray.

He said he recognized the success of a Wyoming stable token could be a great achievement that could “nurture Wyoming’s reputation as a leader in the digital asset world.”

The new legislation will develop a board composed of the governor or the governor’s designee, the state auditor or the auditor’s designee, the treasurer or the treasurer’s designee and not more than four subject matter experts in virtual currency and financial technology appointed by a majority vote of the members of the board.

Gordon said less thought was given to the detailed implementation of the program than to the imagined prospects of success.

“First and foremost, there was no overall plan (a “business plan” for lack of a better term) or, if a plan exists, it did not appear to have been used to guide the legislators in crafting the legislation,” he wrote. “Even more concerning, is that this legislation does not require such a plan before an expensive director is hired.”

He is also concerned the $500,000 appropriation contained in the bill “may not be enough” to set the plan in action.

Gordon said it remains unclear whether a robust market exists for Wyoming stablecoin, particularly considering recent developments.

“Nevertheless, despite these concerns, enough improvements have been made to the legislation that I have decided to allow the Stable Token Act to become law without my signature,” he wrote.

The token, which has yet to be named, would be backed by 1 for 1 investments in United States treasury bills and held in trust by the state, with hopes of earning interest from the investments.

The bill first passed through the state Senate by a 20-11 vote. Sen. Dan Laursen (R-Powell) voted against the bill while Sen. Tim French (R-Powell) voted for the bill.

It then passed through the House by a 36-25-1 vote before proceeding to the governor’s desk, with Rep. Sandy Newsome (R-Cody) voting for the bill and Rep. Rachel Rodriguez-Williams (R-Cody) voting no.

Stablecoins or tokens are used to buy cryptocurrency assets. Profits from the sale of the Wyoming token would be used to increase funding to the school foundation program account.