WTIA Applauds Signing of Washington State Blockchain Work Group Bill Into Law

WTIA Applauds Signing of Washington State Blockchain Work Group Bill Into Law logo/IT Digest
WTIA Applauds Signing of Washington State Blockchain Work Group Bill Into Law logo/IT Digest

Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA), a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering a robust, equity-centered technology sector that empowers thriving communities, today announced full support for the signing of the Washington State Blockchain Work Group bill into law.

Championed by WTIA and State Senator Sharon Brown, with strong bipartisan support from the House of Representatives and the Senate, Governor Jay Inslee signed into law today the Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill 5544 that establishes the Washington blockchain work group. This initiative will bring together blockchain stakeholders to examine applications for blockchain technology across a wide range of areas – including banking and financial services, computing, real estate transactions, health care, supply chain, higher education, and public record keeping.

The work group will help Washington continue to grow as a global leader on blockchain technology. The work group will comprise a range of key stakeholder groups, including representatives from the legislature, financial institutions, and trade associations. The work group will host its inaugural meeting by December 1, 2022 and submit a report to the Governor on its findings by December 1, 2023.

“Every day, companies are adopting blockchain technology to improve delivery of services,” said Sharon Brown, R-Kennewick and the sponsor of the legislation. “This new law is a vital first-step in creating an environment that is welcoming of new business prospects, eager to seek out new applications, and willing to identify potential supply-chain management and STEM-education opportunities. I am pleased to see this legislation signed into law. By creating the Washington Blockchain Work Group we are sending a clear message that Washington is ready to start working with the private sector to advance this technology for the benefit of all Washington residents, employers and workers.”

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The Cascadia region is home to hundreds of startups focused on technology leveraging the ledger system, including app development (Atra Blockchain, ArcBlock), blockchain infrastructure (Dragonchain, NEO and ArcBlock), healthcare (Lumedic) and gaming (Mythical Games). Blockchain has also expanded to the enterprise, with Washington-based legacy companies embracing the technology, including Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure tapping blockchain as a service, T-Mobile leveraging blockchain for telecommunications and Starbucks utilizing blockchain to support its supply chain and logistics.

“Since its founding, the Cascadia Blockchain Council has been dedicated to making the region a global hub for blockchain development. Today represents a major step forward in achieving our goal,” said Arry Yu, Chair, WTIA Cascadia Blockchain Council. “With the formation of the work group, Washington is now positioned to lead the country when it comes to blockchain and distributed ledger technology. It has been a tireless few months of work from the Council and our supporters, and it’s rewarding to see our hard work come to fruition.”

“As a collective voice for the technology community in Washington state, we have seen first hand the power of bringing together the private and public sectors to solve problems and use technology to encourage progress,” said Michael Schutzler, CEO, WTIA. “I’m confident the work group will encourage further collaboration across the industry, laying the groundwork to attract future investment and jobs in the state of Washington.”

About the WTIA Cascadia Blockchain Council
WTIA Cascadia Blockchain Council is helping blockchain companies from Portland, OR to Seattle, WA to Vancouver, BC reach their full potential. The Council serves as the subject matter experts and collective voice to better advocate for constructive public policy and educate key stakeholders, especially investors.