Waltz Introduces Distributed Ledger Technology Act

Waltz Introduces Distributed Ledger Technology Act

“The United States… is falling behind.”

Daniel Molina
Daniel Molina
June 14, 2022

Florida Rep. Michael Waltz (R) has joined a bipartisan group of lawmakers in introducing the National R&D Strategy for Distributed Ledger Technology Act. Joining him in introducing the bill were Florida Rep. Darren Soto (D), Florida Rep. Byron Donalds (R), and California Rep. Eric Swalwell (D).

The bill “would require the federal government to coordinate research and development efforts on distributed ledger technologies (DLT) and their applications.

The bill also has a Senate companion, titled S.4109, which was introduced by Mississippi Senator Roger Wicker (R) and Wyoming Senator Cynthia Lummis (R).

According to a press release from Rep. Waltz, “Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), which includes the more commonly known blockchain technology, is widely known as the foundational technology enabling cryptocurrencies and other digital assets such as non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

NFTs have grown exponential in popularity with celebrities and companies releasing a slew of NFTs for the public to purchase them.

In a statement, Rep. Waltz commented on the need for the bill, expressing that “other nations, including our adversaries, have recognized just how critical investing in the development of distributed ledger technologies is for the future.”

Waltz further informed that “the Chinese Communist Party has built the Blockchain Service Network as part of its ambition to establish a ‘digital silk road.’” In contrast, “the United States… is falling behind.”

In turn, “to maintain our leadership and competitiveness on the world stage, we must invest in the research and development of DLT here at home,” Waltz warned, noting that the “legislation will help fill the gap in current federal science policy, invest in our future, and promote responsible innovation across the country.”

The legislation, if passed, would enact several measures, which includes the following:

  • Require the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) to, in coordination with other relevant Federal agencies, develop a national R&D strategy for DLT and its practical applications
  • Require the National Science Foundation (NSF) to continue supporting research on DLT and its applications, with particular attention to several areas that are under-invested in by the private sector
  • Require the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to engage in an applied research project to study and demonstrate the potential benefits of DLT

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Daniel Molina

Daniel Molina

Daniel Molina is an award-winning senior reporter based in Miami. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English Literature from Florida International University. His hobbies include reading, writing, and watching films.

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