SALT LAKE CITY — A local lawmaker’s bill to allow gold and silver coins to be used as legal tender in Utah is gaining momentum.
The Senate voted 24-4 on Wednesday to adopt HB 317, sponsored by Rep. Brad Galvez, R-West Haven, to allow the precious metals to be used in retail transactions.
Galvez says the measure is a step toward an inflation-proof alternative to paper currency.
If signed into law, the measure would make Utah the second state in the U.S., after Colorado, to recognize the coins as legal tender.
The value of the coins is determined by the value of the precious metal at the time of use, not just the face value of the coin.
The bill also makes transactions to purchase coins exempt from the state’s capital gains tax but does not shield those exchanges from federal taxes.
Earlier this month, Minnesota took a step closer to joining Utah in making gold and silver legal tender. A Republican lawmaker there introduced a bill that sets up a special committee to explore the option. North Carolina, Idaho and at least nine other states also have similar bills drafted.
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