Ohio has become the world’s biggest jurisdiction and the first US state to accept bitcoin for tax payments from any business in the area.
Any of the nearly 12 million Ohio residents that owe business taxes on the state’s $600 billion yearly GDP, can now just go to a website and QR scan a bitcoin payment.
“Under the leadership of Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, taxpayers are able to pay their state business taxes with cryptocurrency for the first time anywhere in America. Ohio has become the first state in the United States, and one of the first governments in the world, to accept cryptocurrency.
From mom and pop coffee shops to Fortune 100 companies, businesses now have the ability to pay their taxes with [bitcoin],” they say.
Individuals currently do not have the option to pay with BTC, but businesses that owe sales taxes, withholding taxes, or many other state taxes, can now pay all or part of their bill in bitcoin.
The surprising announcement might lead one to think Ohio’s treasury wants some bitcoin for diversification purposes, but that does not appear to be the case.
“At no point will the Treasurer’s office hold cryptocurrency. Payments made on OhioCrypto.com, through our third party cryptocurrency payment processor partner BitPay, are immediately converted to USD before being deposited into a state account,” they say.
Making this more of a convenient way to convert your bitcoin into dollars if you need to for taxes, but BitPay does offer the option of retaining a portion of bitcoin payments in actual bitcoin.
They used to provide stats on how many do keep their bitcoin as bitcoin back when merchant acceptance was a trend in 2014.
According to those now very old figures, 4,400 merchants, or about 10% of the then 44,000, kept all of the bitcoin payments in bitcoin.
In addition and quite interestingly, 18,000, or nearly half of their merchants, kept some of it in bitcoin rather than converting it all into fiat.
The remaining 22,000 sent it to dollars straight away. Quite a big mistake one can now safely say with the benefit of hindsight.
Ohio’s Treasurer, Josh Mandel, is apparently a cryptonian. Yet keeping bitcoin for the state treasury might perhaps still be a step too far.
But they can always change their mind and accepting dollarized bitcoin is still better than not accepting it at all.
Arizona was close to doing so with legislation passed there to accept cryptos, but the governor apparently vetoed it.
Zug in Switzerland accepts crypto payments, but they’re tiny compared to Ohio which now hopes to attract crypto and blockchain businesses with this gesture.