“We want to make sure that we believe that if all things are equal, we win,” said Mayor Francis Suarez.
Francis Suarez, who has served as the mayor of Miami since 2017, wants to make the city the most attractive in the United States for those in the crypto and blockchain industry.
In an interview with Forbes published Sunday, Suarez said lawmakers in Miami were looking into the policies of crypto-friendly areas like Wyoming and New York in an effort to promote regulatory incentives for crypto and blockchain in Florida.
“[Miami is] making sure that we have the most progressive crypto laws,” said Suarez. “We want to make sure that we believe that if all things are equal, we win. So, we just want to equalize the playing field. We want to make sure that nobody has an advantage over us based on laws that are easily changeable.”
Mayor Suarez did not describe the race to be the regulatory winner as a fight between lawmakers in other jurisdictions. Rather, he gave Wyoming “kudos for being smart” in attracting crypto firms, but added that “every city in America and in the world should be trying to grow its technology ecosystem.”
“We’re working on making sure that our incentives are in place and that our legislation promotes crypto and blockchain and is forward-thinking.”
The mayor has already made several bullish statements on Bitcoin (BTC) and crypto in recent weeks, including having Miami consider letting city employees to get paid in BTC rather than U.S. dollars. He also proposed allowing Miami residents to pay for local fees and taxes using crypto as well as investing some of the city’s treasury into Bitcoin, a task he called “the hardest” of the three ideas.
He has already spoken with a few high-profile figures in the crypto community including a meeting with Gemini co-founders Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss. Earlier this month, Tyler said that the mayor is “leading the way for governments and Bitcoin.”
Mayor Suarez did not provide a timeline as to when these actions may take effect for Miami’s 450,000 residents, but some in the crypto community have seemingly taken notice. Last week, Bitcoin 2021 announced it would be moving from Los Angeles to Miami for its June crypto conference.
In announcement the appointment, Lummis made clear that she hopes to get digital asset legislation moving.
The most vocally pro-crypto Senator in the U.S. will join the committee responsible for the nation’s financial regulation.
On Wednesday night, Senator Lummis’ team told Cointelegraph that Lummis had received her committee assignments for the 117th congress.
The freshman republican from Wyoming will take her place at three committees: banking, environment, and commerce. The Banking Committee is the Senate’s front line for financial legislation and has hosted hearings with Facebook’s leadership over the Libra stablecoin, as well as, more recently, prospects for a digital dollar.
In a press announcement, Lummis noted her intention of using the appointment to the banking committee to advance digital asset legislation.
“Wyoming has been leading the way on financial innovation over the last several years. Through my role on the Banking Committee, I hope to shine a light on many of these pioneering efforts and work with federal regulators to ensure that regulation of digital assets are structured to encourage innovation, instead of stifling it.”
Lummis, who joined the Senate as of last month, is vocally pro-crypto. In a recent appearance on Anthony Pompliano’s podcast, she expressed her intention to launch a Financial Innovation Caucus.
While the House of Representatives, especially the Financial Services Committee, has long featured many members interested in cryptocurrencies and even a Blockchain Caucus, Lummis is the first Senator to be so publicly engaged in the industry.
“We need to be a leader in FinTech,” said State Senator Mike Flood.
A Nebraska state senator has proposed new crypto-friendly legislation which could see his state become the next regulatory safe haven for FinTech firms.
Sworn in just two weeks ago, Republican Mike Flood today introduced the Transactions in Digital Assets Act and Adopt the Nebraska Financial Innovation Act to the state’s 107th Legislature.
The two bills lay out guidelines for state banks to be able to custody digital assets in addition to creating financial institutions dealing in digital assets for which Nebraska would provide “charter, operation, supervision, and regulation”. The measures would also give local courts the jurisdiction to hear claims “in both law and equity relating to digital assets.”
The proposed legislation will likely move to committee before a general file in the state legislature, where Republican lawmakers currently outnumber Democrats almost two-to-one, 32 to 17.
The proposed bills also aim to address the problem of major banks in the United States discriminating against businesses and individual customers using crypto.
“The rapid innovation of blockchain and digital ledger technology, including the growing use of virtual currency and other digital assets, has resulted in many blockchain innovators and consumers being unable to access secure and reliable banking services, hampering development of blockchain services and products in the marketplace,” states the second bill.
“Many financial institutions in Nebraska and across the United States [refuse] to provide banking services to blockchain innovators and customers and also [refuse] to accept deposits in United States currency obtained from the sale of virtual currency or other digital assets.”
Flood, who previously served as a member and speaker of the Nebraska Legislature until 2013, said he planned to introduce bills intended to make his district a FinTech hub. In a meeting of the Norfolk Chamber of Commerce’s Governmental Affairs Committee last Wednesday, the state senator described cryptocurrency as a market with “great opportunity” for Nebraska.
“This is the future,” said Flood. “To be on the cutting edge of [crypto], I think, is good for us. We need to be a leader in FinTech. We in Norfolk have as much right to this new market as any other place in America.”
Under the 10th amendment to the U.S. Constitution, state laws can often be independent of, or even contradictory to federal laws. One example of this in the crypto space is exchanges such as Binance U.S. having to go state by state to legally make its services available to U.S. residents.
Last July, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced that federally chartered banks would be allowed to provide custody services for cryptocurrency. Though the measures Flood proposed would not be needed for federally chartered banks in Nebraska, the proposals seemingly attempt to extend this benefit to state-chartered banks.