Miami’s Suarez Takes Helm at Mayors Group With Pro-Crypto Pledge
(Bloomberg) -- Miami Mayor Francis Suarez took over as head of the U.S. Conference of Mayors Monday, pledging to promote innovation and proposing that cities sign on to a “crypto compact.”
Suarez, who has courted technology workers and embraced Bitcoin as mayor, said that cities should proactively fight for a crypto regulation that “embodies success” instead of turning the burgeoning industry away, citing China as an example of the latter.
It wasn’t immediately clear what concrete actions Suarez could call for in such a crypto compact. Suarez has promoted Bitcoin through such symbolic gestures as taking a paycheck in the cryptocurrency and posting the Bitcoin White Paper on the city’s website, winning accolades from crypto entrepreneurs and attracting high-profile relocations to his city. But his boldest proposal -- investing city funds in Bitcoin -- faltered in front of the city commission. (It turned out it’s illegal to invest municipal funds in such a volatile asset in Florida.)
The Conference of Mayors -- an organization of U.S. cities with at least 30,000 people -- was formed in 1932 to coordinate on urban policy, among other things. It generally meets at least twice a year. Suarez succeeds Nan Whaley, mayor of Dayton, Ohio, to become the conference’s 80th president.
“I’m going to ask my friends, my brothers and sisters, the mayors of this country to sign on to a mayoral crypto compact, because we need to lead in the absence of leadership,” Suarez said Monday. “We need to make sure that a generation of prosperity and innovation is not lost because of a lack of innovative spirit.”
©2022 Bloomberg L.P.