Chandler, a suburban city in the Phoenix area, recently began allowing residents to pay their utility bills using crypto. Officials in Chandler announced this new move this past Wednesday, allowing residents to pay their bills via PayPal with cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum.
The idea to implement this service came around back in March of 2022 after research by the city was done to determine whether or not offering cryptocurrency payments would be a viable option.
However, officials noted that this would only work if the party had enough cryptocurrency to pay their bills. This city in Phoenix’s East Valley determined a third-party processing agency to deal with its online payment system.
Converting With Invoice Cloud
Invoice Cloud will now handle the cryptocurrency conversion, sending the value of utility payments from people in the Chandler area in the form of dollars.
Councilman Mark Stewart recently did a press release, noting that this plan is all about “customer service for residents.”
Officials in Chandler say that they think this is the first city in the Phoenix area to allow residents to pay utilities with crypto. As of today, around 250,000 people live in the city of Chandler. However, it is still not clear during this time whether any residents are using this new form of payment for their utilities.
This past fall, Chandler was also the first city in Arizona to test out a new blockchain technology system for its mobile voting platform.
While Chandler might be making waves in Arizona with this new payment system, it is not the very first city in the United States to mesh utilities and crypto payments. The first city to test this system out was Mercedes, Texas, which took to it back in November 2021.
Just a few months later, Williston, North Dakota, decided to put its offer online. Both of these cities are smaller than Chandler in terms of population.
Chandler officials say that just because they’ve chosen PayPal as their preferred service means residents won’t be able to use their self-custody crypto. This is because PayPal works with a closed-loop, not allowing digital assets to go in or out of the platform.
When residents choose PayPal, they will get a crypto option when they open up their payment method during the checkout phase.
Evolving Into The Next Decade
Stewart said that the city of Chandler is attempting to plant the seeds that will grow into trees in the next decade or two. The city currently pays millions of dollars in credit card fees each year, which Stewart says they could use to build a neighborhood park, for example.
However, Stewart also noted that the city council would not be assuming any risk in the volatility of cryptocurrency during their evaluation period.
Blockchain technology and digital currency are advancing at incredible rates. As a “Community of Innovation,” the Chandler city council believes it is very important to provide this type of service for its residents.
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