Heavily Critized U.S. Infrastructure Bill Will Come To a Vote on Thursday

September 27, 2021

The $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill with a heavily-critized provision affecting the crypto industry will meet the vote of the U.S. Congress on September 30 and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is confident it will pass.

Pelosi’s office released a letter on Sunday, in which 4 days of debate were announced prior to the legislation, which will help fund road, bridge, airport, school, and other construction projects gets voted on. This according to Reuters.

“Tomorrow, September 27, we will begin debate on the Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework on the Floor of the House and vote on it on Thursday, September 30, the day on which the surface transportation authorization expires.”

The controversy is around the part of the bill that includes a provision that requires mandatory tax reporting for any entity connected to the crypto industry.

The infrastructure bill passed the House in early August although alternative and bipartisan amendments were put forward. The controversy is around the word “broker” mentioned which describes all organizations and companies such as software developers, node validators, stakers, miners, hardware manufacturers, and wallet providers.

Should the wordings remain unchanged and the bill passes, all the beforementioned entities would need to report transactions to the Internal Revenue Service. A good cash cow as this expanded crypto taxation is calculated to raise an additional $28 billion in revenue.

There could be a serious and wide-reaching impact on the crypto industry in the United States and future innovation in the crypto and blockchain space if the bill passes with the provision requiring third-party developers to report to the IRS. An exodus of technology firms from the U.S. is not far-fetched.

Senators, representatives and other lawmakers, including Cynthia Lummis, Anna Eshoo, Pat Toomey, have lobbied House, with the argument that the terminology is too broad and could freeze or even destroy innovation.

Anna Eshoo stated in a letter to Speaker Pelosi on August 12:

“In the decentralized system of cryptocurrencies, these individuals and entities do not know who the buyers and sellers are and would be unable to comply with the broker requirements.”

Although another delay is possible it is not likely to happen. The U.S. Treasury needs new funding following their excessive pandemic stimulus measures. If Congress does not act on the infrastructure bill it could face a default.

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Author: Peter Siu

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