Senate deliberations continued over the weekend over a $1 trillion infrastructure bill, with a particular focus on how the bill could impact the world of cryptocurrency. The infrastructure bill, known as HR 3684, allocates money to build roads, bridges, transportation systems, and support clean energy, among other developments. The bill includes a tax provision that outlines plans to raise about $28 billion for that $1 trillion package through taxes from crypto transactions.
“As we know, cryptocurrency is a digital asset that more and more people are investing in. We should want that to continue, and continue in a healthy and sustainable way,” said Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) during Sunday’s Senate session. Portman, along with other senators, proposed an amendment to the bill’s cryptocurrency tax provision in order to quell concerns over digital rights. However, Portman’s was the second proposed amendment that dealt with this concern. The two competing amendments illuminate the concerns of those in the crypto space who are particularly unhappy with one key word in the tax provision: “broker.”
The bill identifies a “broker” as anyone “responsible for and regularly providing any service effectuating transfers of digital assets on behalf of another person,” and anyone thus identified would be subject to tax reporting requirements. That appears to include people like “miners,” who use a “proof of work” system by solving algorithms with computers and software that, if correct, serve as verification for crypto transactions. Miners don’t have customers, so they wouldn’t be