Mayor Suarez of Miami is looking to make major Bitcoin moves in the near term. The Mayor turned Bitcoin bull has stated today that “paying government employees in Bitcoin is a major priority for the city.” He has also indicated that he is looking for immediate approval to put Bitcoin on Miami’s balance sheet.
— Bitcoin Magazine (@BitcoinMagazine) October 13, 2021
Suarez told Bloomberg News that in regards to paying government employees in Bitcoin: “I want us to differentiate ourselves as a crypto capital of the United States or of the world.” The proposal was initially announced in February but Suarez is looking to advance the plan. In the interview, he stated: “Miami’s top priority at the moment is enabling bitcoin as a payment option for government employee salaries and citizens’ taxes and fees.”
The city will make a formal request for the proposal this month and will take the plan one step closer to implementation. Suarez noted that they will just need to create the payment rail infrastructure to do so. Jack Maller’s Strike protocol has already set up the ability to receive Bitcoin via direct deposit, so Miami may be able to simply build off of that existing structure.
— Jack Mallers (@jackmallers) October 12, 2021
The plan looks likely to pass. When initially proposed in February, the plan was widely supported by city commissioners, with whom Suarez must deal. Speaking on the resolution in February, Suarez praised the city commissioners, who appear to be onboard with his Bitcoin Citadel plans. “I want to thank the city of Miami commissioners for supporting my resolution, which directs a city manager after analysis, to procure a vendor to be able to offer our employees to get a percentage of their salary in bitcoin, allows our residents to pay for fees in bitcoin and also would allow the city manager to cooperate with Miami accounting to allow taxes to be paid in bitcoin.”
Notably, the proposal will allow the city of Miami to invest in Bitcoin and put it on their balance sheets. Suarez told Bloomberg that if the plan had passed in February he would “look like a genius” as Bitcoin is up ~35% since he proposed it. Currently, Florida law would not allow Miami to hold Bitcoin, and this is what he is looking to amend. A commissioner from Miami-Dade established a task force to review and study Suarez’s plan, so there appears to have been headway since then.
The commissioner, Cohen Higgins praised Suarez’s forward-thinking mindset saying she “has been inspired by Suarez’s embrace of tech innovation and wants to support his efforts at the county level by exploring cryptocurrency’s use for municipal government.” Suarez’s popularity has spread to other major political candidates like Andrew Yang, who ran for NYC mayor but lost in the later voting stages this summer. During his candidacy, he vowed to make NYC a “Bitcoin hub”.
If and when a Bitcoin ETF is approved, it will be very easy for governments and localities, who offer state deployed 401(a)s, to make direct Bitcoin exposure possible, and without the need to custody the asset. This is why the approval of a Bitcoin ETF is crucial. There are billions upon billions of capital in traditional investment vehicles that are currently unable to gain exposure to Bitcoin; an ETF would change this.
As it stands, general retirement accounts cannot access even Grayscale’s Trust, unless the person opens a self-directed brokerage account, but those funds are only what the employee contributes, and with an ETF, it would allow them to invest in Bitcoin through their employer contributions, rather than just their own. Mayor Suarez’s actions will likely be followed by hundreds if not thousands of political candidates, especially due to dramatic inflation occurring now in the US.
The narrative will likely be, if you’re not ready to build your political platform around sound money and digital asset innovation, then you are not a serious candidate.
The post BREAKING: City of Miami Makes Bitcoin Salaries “Major Priority” appeared first on CryptosRus.