Saud Anwar

State Senator

Saud Anwar

Deputy President Pro Tempore

Working For You

April 29, 2021

Legislation to Make Government More Efficient and Support the Remote Work Economy Approved by Senate

Today, State Senator Saud Anwar (D-South Windsor) joined in the state Senate’s bipartisan approval of a bill to identify state department services that can be made more efficient by blockchain technology. In addition, Senate Bill 1039, “An Act Concerning Blockchain and Emerging Technologies,” seeks to better position the state to serve remote workers in Connecticut by promoting existing remote workspaces and encourage the creation of additional remote workspaces in available building areas such as underutilized office spaces.

“As Connecticut seeks to make its workforce more streamlined and efficient, proactively adopting new technologies like blockchains will better prepare our state for the future,” said Sen. Anwar. “Blockchain technology resembles an opportunity for our state government to embrace the future while also enhancing how it operates today. I’m excited to see what the future will hold once it’s more widely adopted.”

Under Senate Bill 1039, the state Department of Administrative Services will seek information on how the incorporation of blockchain technology can be used to improve the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of department functions. The department commissioner will create a report identifying functions that could benefit from blockchain technology to the Commerce Committee, and the Government Administration and Elections Committee by January 1, 2022.

Blockchain technology, sometimes referred to as distributed ledger technology, is where each block in the chain contains a number of transactions. When a new transaction occurs that change is recorded and available to be viewed by every participant.

An analogy offered to help understand the basis of blockchain technology is a Google Doc. When a Google Doc is created and shared with people it does not create a copy of the document for each person but distributes the same document to all participants. Thus, they all have access to that document at the same time. Further, when any participant makes a change to the document it is recorded in real-time. Plus, the change is reflected when another person views the document on their side and no need to wait for an updated document to be shared.

The forward-thinking aim of Senate Bill 1039 around blockchain technology is coupled with a focus on the future of work, more specifically the remote work economy.

The commissioner of the state Department of Economic and Community Development would develop and submit a plan to the Commerce Committee by January 1, 2022 to support Connecticut’s remote work economy. The plan would be created in consultation with AdvanceCT, a nonprofit geared toward the retention and recruitment of businesses to Connecticut and advancing the state’s economic competitiveness.

The developed plan would cover, but not limited to, promoting existing remote work workspaces in Connecticut and incentivizing the use of locations such as underutilized office space, unoccupied shopping malls, and central business district areas to create new remote work workspaces in the state.

These workspaces can offer employees working remotely several amenities of the traditional office including conference room space and professional networking opportunities. Generally, the main feature of these workspaces is the flexibility of deciding how often to use the work set up and signing up for a corresponding payment plan including a monthly subscription or pay-as-you-go model. The availability of workspaces serving remote workers would benefit employees that are interested in continuing to work from home post-COVID-19 pandemic but may need to use a more structured office space from time to time. According to a 2020 Pew Research Center survey, half of employed adults who say their job can be mainly done from home would want to remain working from home all or most of the time post-pandemic.