KY Gov. Approves Blockchain Working Group Bill to Explore Use In Security of Critical Infrastructure

Kentucky has successfully completed a legislative process to create a blockchain-oriented working group. This is after its governor, Andy Beshear, signed a bill on April 24 effecting the establishment of a proposed task force.

An official update has since been shared on Kentucky’s General Assembly website on the details of this new bill. According to the publication, the bill was introduced in January 2020 with the aim of advancing blockchain tech. It was, therefore, dubbed ‘AN ACT relating to blockchain technology’.

Kentucky’s Blockchain Bill

This new development is expected to change the approach towards blockchain tech within Kentucky’s government and existing industries. Part of the bill reads,

“The working group shall evaluate the feasibility and efficacy of using blockchain technology to enhance the security of and increase protection for the state’s critical infrastructure, including but not limited to the electric utility grid, natural gas pipelines, drinking water supply and delivery, wastewater, telecommunications, and emergency services.“

Given its fundamentals, the bill appears to have been popular as it was passed with a unanimous vote of 87 against 2 during its final reading on April 14. It was then approved ten days later by Kentucky’s governor and will now guide this state in blockchain-related issues. If successful, Kentucky, is set to join the likes of Wyoming and other states that have so far developed concrete structures for oversight on blockchain tech.

As for the blockchain working group, the bill outlines a total of nine members, three of whom are ex-officio. They will be tasked with different sectors which include, energy, local government, public utilities, Information technology, Communications, and Fiscal matters. Notably, the members will include stakeholders from various public entities in Kentucky such as the Public Service Commission, Homeland Security, and the Commonwealth Office of Technology.

The working group is hence expected to report to Kentucky’s governor and the LRC towards the end of every year,

“The workgroup shall report to the Governor and to the Legislative Research Commission by December 1 of each year. The report shall include the current priority list and a discussion of whether blockchain could be deployed, and any associated cost-benefit analysis,”

This initiative is set to cost the state of Kentucky $400,000 annually according to a fiscal noted attached to the bill. The state, therefore, plans to raise these funds from its multiple revenue sources and invest in blockchain oversight and implementation through the acquisition of expertise for its desired goals.

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Author: Edwin Munyui

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