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Digital currency use, testing by feds rejected by North Carolina lawmakers

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(The Center Square) – Lawmakers in North Carolina overwhelmingly rejected using Central Bank digital currency or participation in testing by the Federal Reserve Branch.

No Centrl [sic] Bank Digital Currency Pmts to State, as House Bill 690 is known, follows up on language in General Statute 147-86.11(a) that directs the state’s controller, treasurer, budget officer and auditor to “develop, implement and amend as necessary a uniform statewide plan to carry out the cash management policy” for all state agencies.

The proposal has a new section, General Statute 147-86.19, saying “central bank digital currency payments prohibited.”

Cryptocurrencies are digital currencies, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. In 2022, the Biden administration authorized further research into digital currencies by executive order. The bill awaits a decision by Gov. Roy Cooper.

Senate passage was 39-5 and the House of Representatives was 109-4. Against in the Senate were Democrats Val Applewhite of Cumberland County, Dan Blue of Wake County, Michael Garrett and Gladys Robinson of Guilford County, and DeAndrea Salvador of Mecklenburg County. Against in the House were Democrats John Autry and Mark Belk of Mecklenburg County, Sarah Crawford of Wake County, and Pricey Harrison of Guilford County.

On May 22, the U.S. House passed changes for regulation of the cryptocurrency industry in a bill known as FIT21. The legislation is opposed by the White House. The Financial Innovation and Technology for the 21st Century Act, approved 279-136, had support of 71 Democrats.

There’s been no action for it yet in the Senate.

U.S. Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., was the floor leader in final debate on the bill.

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