Virginia Senate Recommends Funding for AI and Cryptocurrency Commissions

Virginia Senate Recommends Funding for AI and Cryptocurrency Commissions

The Virginia Senate Committee recently proposed an annual fund allocation of $39,240 to support two newly formed commissions centered around artificial intelligence (AI) and cryptocurrency. This decision came after a recommendation was put forward by a Subcommittee of Virginia’s Senate Finance and Appropriations Committee on February 18. The allocated funds, which total over $23.6 million to various legislative departments, are aimed at supporting the growth and development of these emerging industries within the state.

One of the commissions set to benefit from this funding is the Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Commission (SB 439). Established in January 2024, the commission is slated to receive a general fund allocation of $17,192 over a two-year period. The primary focus of this commission is to conduct research on blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies, provide recommendations, and facilitate their expansion within Virginia. The commission will be composed of 15 members, including both legislative and non-legislative representatives, who will be appointed within 45 days of the act coming into effect.

Artificial Intelligence Commission Financial Support

Similarly, the Artificial Intelligence Commission (SB 487) is also set to receive funding amounting to $22,048 for the same duration. This commission, currently under review by the Committee on Communications, Technology, and Innovation, aims to establish and uphold policies that govern the use of AI technologies to prevent unlawful activities and ensure ethical implementation within the state. The recommendation for funding underscores the state’s commitment to fostering responsible growth and innovation in the field of artificial intelligence.

Virginia has shown proactive efforts in creating dedicated legislative entities aimed at promoting the growth of the cryptocurrency and AI sectors. In addition to the establishment of these commissions, the state recently introduced crypto-mining legislation designed to create favorable conditions for individuals and businesses engaged in mining operations. Senate Bill No. 339, proposed by Senator Saddam Azlan Salim, seeks to exempt miners from obtaining money transmitter licenses and prohibits mining-specific regulations in industrial areas.

Incentivizing Cryptocurrency Use

Moreover, the legislation proposes tax incentives for individuals using digital assets for purchasing goods or services. Individuals can exclude up to $200 per transaction from their net capital gains for tax purposes, encouraging the utilization of cryptocurrencies in everyday transactions by offering tax benefits. This provision aims to promote the wider adoption of digital assets and streamline their integration into mainstream economic activities.

In a separate development, police officers and other state employees in Virginia’s Fairfax County may soon benefit from potential Bitcoin dividends, thanks to a new $40 million crypto venture fund established by digital asset management firm Morgan Creek Digital. The Fairfax County Police Officer’s Retirement System and Employees’ Retirement System, together managing assets worth USD 1.2 billion, have invested part of the $40 million fund in startups such as Bakkt and Coinbase. This initiative reflects a growing trend towards incorporating cryptocurrencies into traditional investment portfolios and underscores the increasing institutional interest in digital assets.

Virginia’s Senate has taken significant steps towards supporting the growth and regulation of the AI and cryptocurrency industries through dedicated fund allocations and legislative initiatives. By fostering innovation and responsible practices within these sectors, Virginia aims to position itself as a leader in the adoption of emerging technologies and create a supportive environment for businesses and individuals operating in these dynamic fields.

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