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Miami Mayor Francis Suarez told Bloomberg that paying government employees in bitcoin is a “major priority” for the city. “I want us to differentiate ourselves as a crypto capital of the United States or of the world,” Suarez said in an interview. A similar proposal was first pushed in February but has since stalled.

Miami’s top priority at the moment is enabling bitcoin as a payment option for government employee salaries and citizens’ taxes and fees, mayor Francis Suarez said in an interview with Bloomberg on October 12.

The city will issue a formal request for proposal this month, according to Suarez, to help actualize the mayor’s plan. Miami will need to create the payment rails to allow city residents to pay fees and taxes in bitcoin.

“I want us to differentiate ourselves as a crypto capital of the United States or of the world,” Suarez told Bloomberg’s Emily Chang.

In February, a similar resolution to integrate BTC into Miami’s operations received support from city commissioners. Suarez’s broader proposal sought to let citizens pay city fees or property taxes in bitcoin, allow city employees to receive compensation in bitcoin, and allow Miami to invest in bitcoin.

“If we would’ve been able to hold it from the moment that I put the resolution on our agenda, it’d be up by 30 or 40 percent, so I would’ve looked like a genius back then,” he said. “But that’s the way it works.”

Suarez has been facing bumps on the road, as Florida statutes don’t currently allow his city to hold BTC. But the mayor has been receiving support at the county level. In April, Danielle Cohen Higgins, District 8 County’s commissioner and representative on the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners, put forth a resolution to establish a task force to assess the feasibility of pursuing Suarez’s plans.

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