SACRAMENTO (AP) — Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill into law that recognizes bitcoins and other virtual currencies in California.
Brown announced over the weekend that he had signed AB129 by Assemblyman Roger Dickinson.
Dickinson, a Democrat from Sacramento, said his bill repeals an outdated restriction on using anything but the lawful currency of the U.S. He says people already routinely use digital currency, coupons, so-called community currency and reward points programs such as Amazon Coins and Starbucks Stars without legal penalty.
Community currencies rely on local merchants who agree to accept the alternative currency, usually as a way of encouraging customers to visit small businesses.
Dickinson noted that many of those currency alternatives predate Bitcoin, a digital currency that has recently gained media attention.