Proposal “Dash-Core-Group-Legal-October-2021“ (Completed)Back

Title:Dash Core Group Professional Services October 2021
Owner:glennaustin
One-time payment: 543 DASH (96029 USD)
Completed payments: 1 totaling in 543 DASH (0 month remaining)
Payment start/end: 2021-10-12 / 2021-11-11 (added on 2021-10-07)
Votes: 738 Yes / 121 No / 4 Abstain

Proposal description

Dash Core Group October 27th Funding Proposals
DCG is submitting 2 funding proposals for the budget cycle that pays out October 27th:
1) DCG Compensation part one: 2,423 Dash per month (currently in month 3/3)
2) DCG Professional Services: 543 Dash per month (currently in month 1/1)

This Proposal
Dash Core Group is engaged in several initiatives that require ongoing funding for professional services:

1) Legal:
  1. Ongoing company legal including contract reviews and officially recognizing changes to Dash Core Group organizational structure, officers, annual filings, etc. 
  2. Initiatives related to work on correcting regulatory perceptions regarding Dash. Dash Core Group has hired outside counsel to assist with engaging with regulators. Legal counsel, in consultation with Dash Core Group, is currently evaluating all available options to remedy the mischaracterization of Dash as an AEC.  The following are the developments in the area:
    1. Australia: Working with a major partner in Australia, Dash Core Group improved Dash’s perceived AML risk with regulators (AUSTRAC). We will continue to work with partners in Australia to ensure an accurate understanding by regulators of the Dash network and its technology
    2. JFSA:  Have made large strides in Japan through a multipronged regulatory initiative in partnership with Yosuke Suda (Dash community member). To date, a top recognized law firm with specialty in cryptocurrency regulations has drafted a legal opinion on Dash for Japanese regulators, met and presented Dash to key regulators, and through active participation in regulatory working groups such as BGIN, have made the case to the JFSA, that Dash is not a “privacy coin”. We will continue to actively support work with BGIN while working with local and international exchange partners operating in Japan to list Dash, thereby signaling the end of Dash’s ban in Japan
    3. FCA: Have been directly communicating with the FCA on Dash in the U.K. Currently, there do not appear to be any issues with Dash by the FCA on a regulatory level, however, we plan to proactively engage the FCA as a resource knowledgeable about cryptocurrency technologies and trends while raising awareness about Dash compliance with AML/MLT where and when opportunities present themselves
    4. FinCEN: Dash Core Group has proactively reached out to several senior members of the FinCEN organization.  While we have not been able to have a meeting with them yet, we did have substantial email interaction with a senior member of FinCEN over the last few months
    5. DOJ: Dash Core Group has reached out to DOJ to discuss Dash and specifically the implementation of CoinJoin that exists in the Dash Core wallet.  The DOJ has been unwilling to meet on a video call despite numerous requests to meet.  In the meantime we have share substantial legal and technical documentation providing solid evidence for why Dash should not be categorized as a “privacy coin”
    6. FINTRAC: Dash Core Group has been engaged in an email dialogue with FINTRAC (Canadian enforcement agency) regarding the designation of Dash as a “privacy coin”.  DCG has provided numerous strong legal and technical arguments to the agency, demonstrating that it substantially mischaracterized Dash as a “privacy coin”.  DCG has been pushing for a meeting with this regulator as well
    7. As a significant development related to this topic, Dash was recently relisted on a major U.S. exchange (Bittrex) as a direct result of these efforts

Call to action: if any community members have contacts or connections at any of the aforementioned organizations or can provide help on the regulatory front - please reach out to ryan@dash.org or glenn@dash.org.  Any assistance from the community on these initiatives is greatly appreciated.

2) Accounting and tax:
      a)   Support with ongoing accounting services for Dash Core Group
      b)   Engagement of an outside firm to continue optimizing tax accounting; the tax firm we currently use recently assisted us in a dispute with the IRS that resulted in Dash Core     
             Group recovering $25,000 in tax overpayment

As mentioned in previous professional services proposals, determining the exact costs for professional services projects at the outset is impossible, and determining a likely range for many items is highly variable due to factors outside our control (e.g., whether there are follow-up requests from regulators, whether DCG is subject to a tax audit or dispute). This means we can’t assign a specific cost to legal and tax support initiatives we undertake. In the past we have tended to request incremental figures, and supplement the budget as needed as cases develop, and we plan to continue to do that going forward. This avoids the need to request “worst case” funding estimates, which may exceed the final costs of a given engagement.

If you have any questions, please direct them to @babygiraffe in this post to ensure we are notified of your request.

Requested funding is as follows for the budget cycle paying out end of October:
· 538 Dash for legal expenses ($103,300 USD @ $192 per Dash)
·     5 Dash proposal reimbursement
Total: 543 Dash

Note: Any unused budget will be applied toward other professional service expenses and any resulting taxes.

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Discussion: Should we fund this proposal?

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1 point,6 days ago
You have my support, funding for Legal operations in order to reach regulators and provide them with factual information about Dash is very important, as is getting further funding for DCG Accounting and tax.
Reply
0 points,7 days ago
The government is the ENEMY, they want us all in gulags. If you think otherwise you are kidding yourself.

The DCG should be closed, save all the "admin/legal funding" and the Dash treasury should just pay developers directly using anonymous Dash.

No x16 always even though the DCG does some good stuff and hasn't fucked up Dash at least.
Reply
2 points,7 days ago
What you are advocating for basically amounts to "Let the regulators have the last word. Don't support exchanges that wish to list Dash by providing them with legal positions they can use to argue with regulators on our behalf. Don't push back against their stupid proposed rules and put our arguments up against theirs." Basically, let's just let the regulators win with their inaccurate depictions that its impossible to service Dash in a compliant way (in fact MSBs can), and give up on allowing money services businesses to use Dash. So let the great delisting begin... that's sure to be great for Dash!

DCG has already been successful in getting Dash relisted in Australia and the U.S. exchanges. That is good for Dash, not bad. I don't like regulators either... but I'd rather fight their efforts than concede by letting them pressure exchanges to needlessly delist Dash.

That would be like saying "I don't like robbers, so I'm going to ignore the one that just walked in my house." No, you grab your gun and you start fighting!
Reply
1 point,7 days ago
There are absolutely no laws or regulations that prevent Dash from being listed. We keep winning that argument over and over - and convincing exchanges of the same with this legal funding. WHY would we discontinue doing something that we've already proven is successful? We would not be on Bittrex today if we hadn't responded to the proposed rulemaking this year. Burying our heads in the sand is not the way you fight regulatory overreach!
Reply
0 points,13 days ago
Who is handling the legal services for DCG?
Reply
1 point,13 days ago
Weiss Brown handles all the legal work associated with contract reviews and recognizing changes to the DCG organizational structure as well as annual filings. They are located in Scottsdale Arizona. https://www.weissbrown.com/

Sidley Austin represents Dash Core Group in many of our U.S. focused regulatory endeavors.
https://www.sidley.com

In addition, Dash Core Group recently joined the Blockchain Association in the U.S. This is an organization that has been working on improving the public policy environment for blockchain networks in the U.S.
https://theblockchainassociation.org/

We are aware that most of our work has been U.S.-centric in recent months. We would like to become more proactive in engaging with regulatory authorities in other countries (e.g FCA).

That said we have had some activity outside of the U.S. We have been active with BGIN (https://theblockchainassociation.org/), INATBA (https://inatba.org/) and Global Digital Finance (https://www.gdf.io/) on a limited basis since we don't have a dedicated person focused on regulatory topics.

Let me repeat the call to action - if any community members have connections or suggestions in terms of help engaging on the regulatory front, please let us know.
Reply
0 points,16 days ago
I'm not sure how I can separate out money for contract reviews, taxes etc, and money for regulatory surveillance.
Reply
1 point,12 days ago
I agree, there isn't enough granularity provided in terms of how these funds will be allocated and regarding the timing. This was not deliberately conflated. As I mentioned in the proposal, it is difficult to estimate how exactly the funds will be deployed. That said, I do believe the network should be provided with more granularity in order to make an informed decision so I have attempted to allocate the funding by initiative.

I believe the funding will last us a minimum of 8 months. Here is the rough estimate of how I envision the expenses will be allocated:
1) $30,000 (~$4k/month): Ongoing company legal including contract reviews and officially recognizing changes to Dash Core Group organizational structure, officers, annual filings, etc.
2) $8,000 (~$1k/month): Support with ongoing accounting services for Dash Core Group.
3) $10,000 Tax preparation and filing: cost of filing annual taxes in March 2022; preparing tax files for FY end June 2022; and final costs of disputing a $25k penalty the IRS is attempting to impose on us.
4) $50,000: Legal reserve for the next 8 months to deal with responses to regulators, resources for getting listed by an exchange in Japan or NY (as we continue to attempt to gain access to these 2 large markets), cost of membership in 2022 for the organizations I have mentioned in my previous response. Hopefully, we will spend only a minimal amount of this allocation on these initiatives. But it is prudent to have a reserve in place in case.

As I mention in the proposal "determining the exact costs for professional services projects at the outset is impossible, and determining a likely range for many items is highly variable due to factors outside our control (e.g., whether there are follow-up requests from regulators, whether DCG is subject to a tax audit or dispute). This means we can’t assign a specific cost to legal and tax support initiatives we undertake. In the past we have tended to request incremental figures, and supplement the budget as needed as cases develop, and we plan to continue to do that going forward. This avoids the need to request “worst case” funding estimates, which may exceed the final costs of a given engagement."

We hope this response provides enough granularity for you to make an informed decision on whether or not to support this proposal. If this proposal does not pass, I commit to submitting more granular proposals related to each initiative in the future.
Reply
1 point,11 days ago
Thank you for the response and explanation.

I'd like to say, I do not have any desire to micromanage over expenses, I believe that would have a very negative effect. In this particular instance, I feel some parts are more contentious / sensitive than others and thus worthy of separation. But again, thank you for the response. As a gesture of goodwill I have switched one of my votes to Yes.
Reply
0 points,9 days ago
Understood. Thank you for your support and for prompting us to provide more detailed information.
Reply
1 point,13 days ago
You realize this is funding to **combat** the regulators and their position that Dash is some huge risk, right? It's not funding regulatory surveillance.
Reply
1 point,12 days ago
How is it combating when it's kissing their ass?
Reply
1 point,12 days ago
It is combating their position with legal arguments. Did you see the response to finCEN? Bittrex delisted Dash, then DCG responded to finCEN and Dash later got relisted. I'm sure in no small part due to those letters and arguments like them to Bittrex. I don't consider that "kissing their ass". To the contrary, that is standing up to them and making sure Dash is treated equitably and not singled out. To defund that activity would be stupid, frankly.
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3 points,12 days ago
Oh you can twist it anyway which way you like but the banks and the governments made the rules and they make the obedient and compliant friendly DCG jump through hoops.. they say jump, DCG say "how high?". So yes, that most definitely is kissing ass.

When you comply like this you also constrain yourself, locking yourselves in to a specific technology or process. Imagine tomorrow you thought of adding MW Extended Blocks... well you wouldn't because of FEAR of upsetting the people you work so hard to please. You want to call that progress?

If you want to argue "combating" and standing up to abuse, then I dare DCG to defy them and go full on privacy, non of this "we're the same as bitcoin" shite. I mean, really, go ahead, I'll give my full blessing if DCG dare to go full throttle on privacy.

In all these YEARS of "combating" regulation, how comes dash hasn't achieved the same ubiquity as bitcoin? I mean, you've been fighting for fairness, right? How many more years we must endure before you actually admit defeat?

In any event, this proposal does not give us the granularity to choose between contract reviews, taxes etc and those of the more contentious type. It looks like the two were deliberately conflated.
Reply
1 point,12 days ago
Only a fascist government regulator could literally invent the acronym "Anonymity Enhanced Cryptocurrencies" (AECs). My response acronym is WTF. I mean literally, they took what little they could salvage and divided to conquer. Bitcoin reluctantly good but we can call evil on peoples financial privacy. Fuck the lot of them.

Let me tell you straight, the US government LITERALLY STOLE my egold because I was unable to meet their "regulatory requirements" within a specific period of time. Guilty before innocent. Never did drugs. Never killed anyone. Just minding my own business while governments stockpile nukes to kill millions of people. And they have the fucking nerve to "regulate" me in case I do what exactly?

Standing up to them is done through zeroes and ones.
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-1 point,12 days ago
Indeed, very very stupid.
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