Darren Soto’s idea to establish a post to advise the president on blockchain was also put into the $280 billion package, which benefits the semiconductor sector.
The Chips and Science Act was approved by the US House of Representatives on Thursday with a vote of 243 to 187. The legislation, which was submitted to the Senate more than a year ago, supports research while offering subsidies and incentives to the semiconductor sector. Additionally, it establishes a post for a blockchain and cryptocurrency expert in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP).
On Wednesday, the Senate approved the measure. The total cost is $280 billion, which includes $170 billion in research incentives, $52 billion in grants and incentives for American semiconductor makers that are in strong competition with China. It is anticipated that it would help the industry’s supply chain problems as well.
A passage establishing a blockchain and cryptocurrency specialist job in the OSTP to “advise the President on topics relevant to blockchain and cryptocurrencies” is tucked away in the long “Miscellaneous Science and Technology Provisions” chapter of the bill. The text of that clause was taken from a different measure that Democratic Florida Representative Darren Soto proposed, according to a statement he issued. In the statement, Soto stated:
“As a co-chair of the Congressional Blockchain Caucus and a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, I am proud to foster the policy needed to ensure innovation continues to take shape in our government and the CHIPS and Science Act will do just that.”
Soto has long been an advocate for cryptocurrencies. He and Republican Tom Emmer co-sponsored a measure in 2020 to exclude minor crypto transactions from capital gains tax. He and Emmer were also co-sponsors of the Digital Commodity Exchange Act, which was reintroduced in April 2022. In some of the activities required under President Joe Biden’s Executive Order on Ensuring Responsible Development of Digital Assets, the OSTP was given a role.