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Vermont is the latest US State to devote increased time and money to emerging blockchain technologies. On January 9 the Secretary of State Jim Condos and Department of Financial Regulation Commissioner Michael Pieciak signed a memorandum focused on collaborating together in the blockchain space.
The Department of Financial Regulation issued a press release on the topic on January 11. The pilot program will help identify any areas of government that may be improved by blockchain technology; for example, data security, and also aims to reduce costs for Vermont residents.
“Developments in technology provide opportunities for government to improve efficiency and transparency, cut red tape, and improve services for Vermonters,” said Secretary Condos. “This pilot will allow us to examine whether or not the application of blockchain technology for digital recordkeeping can improve aspects of the state regulatory process.”
Vermont is now joining an ever increasing list of places around the world that are looking for innovative blockchain solutions to their problems. 2019 looks to be a big year for innovation in the blockchain space, with the number of blockchain start-ups continuing to rise, and companies and governments choosing to fund blockchain programs.
“Financial services firms are innovating at lightning speed and regulators have an obligation to keep up,” said Commissioner Pieciak. “This partnership with the Secretary of State provides a great opportunity for our teams to become better acquainted with distributed ledger technology and understand how the state and Vermont businesses might benefit.”
Vermont is the worldwide leader in captive insurance by premium written and third in the world by active licenses, making this a good place to start.
“Vermont has long been known as an international leader in the captive insurance industry with a robust regulatory and professional community and a willingness to embrace innovation,” said Captive Insurance Deputy Commissioner David Provost. “This makes Vermont’s captive insurance industry the ideal place to pilot this blockchain program.”
Vermont may be the latest, but they won’t be the last. A great thing about this push for more blockchain solutions to traditional problems is that companies and governments are learning from each other. These new blockchain pilots will be analyzed and tested for their efficiency, and if successful, will not only be rolled out but also adopted in other areas.
Other states with similar ambitions will be keeping a close eye on Vermont and likely beginning their own think tanks to consider how blockchain can help them.