Following through on a plan he announced before he took office, New York City Mayor Eric Adams said Thursday that his first paycheck, which arrives on Friday, will be converted from US dollars into cryptocurrency. The transaction will take place on Coinbase, the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the US, and will convert Adams’ pay into Bitcoin and Ethereum.
“New York is the center of the world, and we want it to be the center of cryptocurrency and other financial innovations,” Adams said in a statement. “Being on the forefront of such innovation will help us create jobs, improve our economy, and continue to be a magnet for talent from all over the globe.”
Adams tweeted on November 4th that he would take his first three paychecks in Bitcoin when he became mayor because “In New York we always go big,” he noted. The idea was part of a back-and-forth with Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, who said in November he’d take his next paycheck in Bitcoin.
In New York we always go big, so I’m going to take my first THREE paychecks in Bitcoin when I become mayor. NYC is going to be the center of the cryptocurrency industry and other fast-growing, innovative industries! Just wait!
— Eric Adams (@ericadamsfornyc) November 4, 2021
US Department of Labor rules prohibit New York City from paying employees in cryptocurrency, however, hence the post-payment conversion on Coinbase. Suarez reportedly converts his city salary into Bitcoin using fintech exchange Strike. The two join a growing list of professional athletes— which includes Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers — who take or convert their salaries in cryptocurrency.
Both Suarez and Adams are pushing to make their respective cities DeFi hubs, with Suarez supporting crypto investments in the south Florida city and launching a token called MiamiCoin last year.