House approves Brown’s blockchain work group bill

Praising the bill as a critical step for everything from job-creation to agriculture to a tool for addressing privacy concerns, members of the House of Representatives unanimously passed Sen. Sharon Brown’s bill to establish the Washington Blockchain Work Group.

“Taking a look at the possibilities of what blockchain brings, and how it can be used for good or ill, is critical,” said Rep. Vicki Kraft, R-Vancouver.

Brown applauded the House for its decisive support of the bill, which is one of her top priorities this legislative session.

“They get it,” said Brown, R-Kennewick. “This bill is about positioning Washington as a leader on blockchain technology and working with our industries and other stakeholders to create 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.

“This work group will allow the state and the private sector to work together to advance this technology for the benefit of all Washingtonians.” 

Substitute Senate Bill 6065 would create the work group with the purpose of examining various potential applications of blockchain technology, such as computing, banking and other financial services, real estate transactions, healthcare and public record keeping. Under the bill, the group would consist of lawmakers, representatives of the departments of commerce and financial institutions and the state’s Consolidated Technology Services agency, along with private-sector stakeholders and experts. It would operate between Aug. 1, 2020, and Jan. 1, 2022.

SSB 6065, which passed the Senate 48-0 last month, will now return to the Senate for that chamber’s consideration of the changes made by the House.