New York City Mayor Eric Adams said Thursday that his first paycheck, which is due to arrive on Friday, will be automatically converted to cryptocurrency through Coinbase Global Inc.
U.S. Department of Labor regulations prohibit the city from paying its employees directly in cryptocurrencies. However, it is possible to use a digital asset exchange to convert US dollars into cryptocurrencies before the funds are made available. To that end, Adams’ office chose Coinbase, the largest regulated cryptocurrency exchange in the US, to conduct the transaction. Adams said in a statement:
“New York is the center of the world and we want it to become the center of cryptocurrency and other financial innovation. Being at the forefront of such innovations will help us create jobs, improve our economy and continue to be a magnet for talent from around the world.”
Although Adams has yet to propose specific measures that would make New York a cryptocurrency hub, digital asset enthusiasts have called his endorsement of Bitcoin encouraging and believe his stance could attract more digital asset startups to New York.
After his election in November, Adams also suggested that New York schools offer courses on cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology, and pledged to convert his first three paychecks to bitcoin after a similar promise from Miami Mayor Francis Suarez.