SL Tribune: Legislature backs gold as legal tender
Continuing his coverage of the Utah Legal Tender Act, Lee Davidson of the Salt Lake Tribune provides the following commentary:
The Senate gave final approval Thursday to a bill taking the first step to recognize gold and silver as legal tender in the state.
It voted 16-7 to pass HB317, and sent it to Gov. Gary Herbert for his signature.
The measure would recognize as legal tender gold and silver coins issued by the federal government — not just their face value, but also their value in gold and silver or to a collector.
It would not require anyone to accept them, however, but make it an option. It also would exempt sales of such coins from capital gains tax. It also would order the state to study whether Utah should establish an alternative form of legal tender, such as one backed by silver and gold.
“It will put some pressure on the federal government. That’s the goal here because right now we have a dollar that’s just running away with inflation and our hope is that this is a little bit of a shock that’ll say we want to deal with inflation,” Senate Majority Leader Scott Jenkins, R-Plain City, Senate sponsor of the bill, said in earlier debate. He gave senators gold chocolate coins on Thursday before debate.