COLUMBUS— State Representative Rick Carfagna (R-Genoa Township) announced today the introduction of House Bill 220, which will allow governmental entities in Ohio to utilize blockchain technology in their governance activities.


At its core, blockchain is technology that allows for the secure transmission and storage of many forms of records and data. The revolutionary nature of blockchain stems from its ability to ensure that information is accessible to individuals within a network, while simultaneously maintaining the authenticity of the data.


“Blockchain is an exciting, innovative technology that has been proven to be effective in streamlining recordkeeping practices and securing important data,” Representative Carfagna said. “As a former township trustee, I believe it is critical that we equip government officials with the ability to utilize this technology, should they determine that it will help them improve the effectiveness and efficiency of their operations.”


House Bill 220 builds on the accomplishments of Senate Bill 220 from the 132nd General Assembly, sponsored by Senators Bob Hackett (R-London) and Kevin Bacon (R-Minerva Park), which enhanced Ohio’s laws relating to cybersecurity. One specific provision of SB 220 authorized private sector entities to utilize blockchain to secure records and contracts, as well as transmit electronic signatures.


“The passage of Senate Bill 220 was an important step to allow for the utilization of blockchain by Ohio businesses,” said Rep. Carfagna. “It is my belief that we should allow Ohio’s governmental entities to modernize their operations by utilizing technology that has shown proven results in the private sector.”


House Bill 220 is also the latest in a series of government efforts across the state to enable a marketplace for blockchain technology. In February, the County Auditors’ Association of Ohio (CAAO) announced the formation of a working group to study how blockchain technology can be implemented at the county level to more effectively transfer property deeds. Last month, Ohio Treasurer Robert Sprague stated his office would continue accepting cryptocurrency as a tax payment option through the state’s online portal, OhioCrypto.com.


Ohio Lt. Governor Jon Husted applauded House Bill 220’s release, as the legislation fulfills a key part of the DeWine administration’s InnovateOhio initiative, which endeavors “to use technology in government to improve services, reduce cost, and spur a culture of innovation in Ohio.”


“We need to make sure we are laying a legal framework that allows emerging technologies to succeed in Ohio and I appreciate Representative Carfagna’s leadership in the legislature to help make that happen,” said Lt. Governor Husted.

 
 
 
  
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