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Governor Phil Murphy of New Jersey has signed bill S2297, the Blockchain Initiative Task Force, into law this Friday. This new legislation puts New Jersey on the clear path to more blockchain adoption and innovation. The bill commissions the Blockchain Initiative Task Force to study the potential use-cases of the technology on local and state level.
The bill specifically points out medical records, land records, banking, and property auctions as potential applications. Furthermore, the Task Force will be responsible for reporting on the risks and rewards of distributed ledger technology and its domains such as public and private blockchains and consensus algorithms.
Furthermore, the task force will also submit a cost-benefit analysis of introducing blockchain technology into the government’s operations as well as recommendations on implementing such solutions. The task force will have 14 members appointed by various officials of the government and will be required to present its first report in 180 days to the governor’s office and the state’s Commission on Science, Innovation and Technology.
The bill was first drafted in March 2018. It has passed the US the New Jersey Senate with one nay and the New Jersey assembly unanimously. The signing of the bill was announced on the official site of the state of New Jersey on Aug. 8.
New Jersey’s Chief Technology Officer Chris Rein will be heading this task force. Rein expressed that he was looking forward to the job and to help the state determine how to best use, and optimize blockchain technology.
One of the sponsors of the bill, Senator James Beach, stated:
“In an age where digital information needs protecting, blockchain is a technological innovation that will protect us from hackers and those seeking to steal our information […] I believe that whatever the taskforce decides, there is a place for blockchain to be used in local governments to protect them from the ever increasing dangers of the Internet.”
New Jersey Takes the Blockchain Reins
The state of New Jersey has been in a league of its own when it comes to blockchain regulation and legislation. The state is taking comprehensive steps to protect its citizens from fraudulent schemes as well as encouraging an industry wide adoption with progressive bills like this one.
While the US struggles to come up with a comprehensive set of rules for the crypto industry that not only clears the air for blockchain-focused companies and gives way to innovation and growth, but also protects investors, local governments are starting to take matters into their own hands.
With this new bill, it seems that New Jersey is making giant strides towards embracing a technology that can save the state a lot of funds and also provide its citizens a more transparent administration.