The United States Senate Committee of Commerce, Science and Transportation has approved the Blockchain Promotion Act. The bill moves the U.S. closer to a clear blockchain definition at a federal level.
Bitcoin is a decade old now. The world is still struggling to accept its importance and potential. The denial by global regulators has left them unable to deal with the regulations and standards that the blockchain industry needs for a fairer and safer market. Providing a definition for blockchain is an important step in establishing what constitutes as a blockchain and what rules will apply to it.
The bill also establishes a blockchain working group within the Department of Commerce. The bill states:
“Not later than 90 days after 6the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall establish within the Department of Commerce a working group to be known as the ‘’Blockchain Working Group.’”
Members of this group are supposed to be representatives of different federal agencies which could use blockchain and non-governmental stakeholders such as information and communication technology manufacturers, suppliers, software providers, service providers, vendors and experts.
The group’s job is to provide a report to Congress in one year of its formation. The report will cover two topics. A recommendation for the definition of blockchain as well as a recommendation on research to be conducted. The purpose of the research will be to measure the impact of distributed ledger technologies on electromagnetic spectrum policy. The report will also be recommending uses of distributed ledger technologies for federal agencies.
The Democratic Congresswoman Doris Matsui from California said in a statement:
“This bipartisan, bicameral bill will bring a broad group of stakeholders together to develop a common definition of blockchain, and, perhaps even more importantly, recommend opportunities to leverage the technology to promote new innovations.”
Rep. Matsui is sponsoring an identical bill in the house with Rep. Brett Guthrie, a Republican from Kentucky. The bill is being sponsored in the Senate by Sens. Markey and Todd Young, a Republican from Indiana.
The crypto community is receiving mixed signals from the U.S. government lately. Just a few days ago, U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted his disdain for Bitcoin and other digital currencies. Now, this bill has been passed that could mean good things for the adoption and acceptance of blockchain in the government. We can only wait and see which way they will swing next.