Joel Robideaux, the mayor-president of the town of Lafayette in the US state of Louisiana, announced the plans to create and launch a local cryptocurrency, a tool that would boost the technological development of the governmental platforms and the third-party investments in the town.
According to local media sources, Robideaux presented the proposal during the presentation of his annual report at the Heymann center. He said the initiative to create a cryptocurrency was a new step towards converting Lafayette into a technological center.
The mayor-president pointed out that the blockchain technology could enhance the territorial advantages of the town, diversify the local economy, improve the governmental services and even convert into a new way of financing of public works on the territory of Lafayette.
The plan of the local government is to launch an initial coin offering (ICO) campaign to raise the necessary funds for constructing a laboratory dedicated exclusively to the blockchain platforms. The information about the laboratory is scarce – its location and the costs to build it are unknown, as well as its goals.
Robideaux says that beyond the interests of crypto anarchists and libertarians, the cryptocurrencies are becoming a new method of payment in the banking industry. This is a vision that enhances the government’s commitment to adopt this innovative technology. Robideaux said: “It’s not just a bunch of global libertarians that want unregulated, untraceable and secure digital currency transactions. It’s the recognition of global stakeholders that the world of banking, finance and payment systems is forever changed, that the world of healthcare, government and possibly every other industry is about to be disrupted.”
Despite the fact that the majority of information about the project was not disclosed by the mayor-president of Lafayette, it is known that that the project is motivated by the town of Berkeley in California. Berkeley uses the blockchain technology to fight the tax reform of the president Trump and raise funds for homeless people through microbonds.
There are other examples from around the world where the blockchain technology is used to improve many industries and sectors. Venezuela, Russia and China contemplated the idea to launch their own cryptocurrencies. Some projects are still being developed, while others advanced more quickly. For example, Venezuela launched its cryptocurrency called Petro and raised many controversies with it.
Joel Robideaux challenged the residents of Lafayette to consider what these innovative technologies, such as augmented reality, machine learning systems and artificial intelligence could mean for the town and how they can be used to improve the functioning of Lafayette. He said: “These terms are just phrases and acronyms that translate to better stormwater management, traffic lights that adjust in real time, and improved government transparency.”
The mayor-president believes the new technologies could lead to better commercial synchrony, improved governmental transparency and true economic diversification that would enable the development of economic performance methods and avoid job losses.