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Bill calls for allowing gold, silver coins to be used as currency

BOISE – An Idaho House committee voted Tuesday to introduce legislation from Rep. Phil Hart to let Idahoans use gold and silver coins at face value as “legal tender” and “as an alternative to the Federal Reserve notes that currently circulate as our only currency.”

In addition, the bill would exempt from all taxes any transaction paid for in gold and silver coins.

State Rep. Eric Anderson, R-Priest Lake, voted against introducing the new bill. “To me, it looks like nothing more than a tax avoidance,” Anderson said. “I don’t buy the argument.”

Hart, a fourth-term Republican from Athol, has been working on various versions of his “sound money” proposal for several years. He’s also a tax protester who currently has an appeal to the Idaho Supreme Court pending over unpaid state income taxes, and a pending action in federal court in which the IRS is trying to foreclose on his log home in Athol for back federal income taxes.

The bill says gold and silver coin transactions “shall not be subject to any sales, excise, gross receipts, income, capital gains, or other form of tax.”

The measure declares, “Sound money, most commonly precious metal coin … reliably retains its value over time, irrespective of any governmental declaration to require or prohibit its use.”