American Innovation $1 Coin Act Introduced in Senate

by Mike Unser on June 23, 2017 · 16 comments

Coin-Legislation-Capital-Building.jpgLegislation authorizing a 56-coin series of numismatic $1 coins for American innovation was introduced June 8 in the U.S. Senate by Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT).

The bill, named the American Innovation $1 Coin Act, S. 1326, marks a first for the Senate but sister bills have been presented more than once in the House. Most recently, H.R. 770 was introduced Jan. 31 after a previous rendition died from inaction in the last session of Congress.

Should either of the newest bills pass in both chambers of Congress and get signed by the President, the United States Mint beginning in 2018 would strike $1 coins with reverse designs that celebrate a significant innovation, an innovator or pioneer, or a group of innovators or pioneers within each state, the District of Columbia and U.S. territory. The $1 coin program would last 14 years with four unique design releases every year.

A provision in the legislation prohibits designs bearing any portrait or bust of any person living or dead. Reverses would also feature the represented state, district, or territory, plus standard inscriptions of $1 and UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

The Secretary of the Treasury would select the innovations, innovators or pioneers, or group of innovators or pioneers to be honored after consulting with Governors or other chief executives of the state, the District of Columbia, or territory. The Secretary would also choose the eventual dollar designs after receiving recommendations from the heads of the sites, the Commission of Fine Arts and the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee.

An obverses or heads sides design symbolic of Liberty would be shared across all 56 coins, along with the inscription IN GOD WE TRUST. Regular dollar edge inscriptions are called for, including the year of minting, or issuance, E PLURIBUS UNUM, and a mint mark, as well as the standard $1 coin composition of manganese-brass.

American Innovation $1 Coins would be issued for collectors alongside the current series of dollar coins honoring Native Americans and their contributions to the development and history of the United States.

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Richard June 23, 2017 at 10:51 am

Getting a bit silly here…. It was well before my time but from what I’ve read, in the 1930s the commemorative half dollar program got completely out of hand. You can see it in the Red Book with towns and counties, not to mention some fairly obscure events, getting their own issues. Other series, like the beautiful Oregon Trail issues, started okay but then went on and on. Finally Congress called a halt. Maybe it’s time to take a really good look at the criteria for new offerings of all kinds. It has to be some group outside of the Mint since they just keep generating more and more stuff there.

Joe C. June 23, 2017 at 12:46 pm

Bad idea. Just another excuse to scam the collectors.

Chas Barber June 23, 2017 at 1:41 pm

New coin 10th Anniversary of MCM………early release & Mike Mutzak privy ltd. ed……how many Prez$ in the vaults..BILLION$$$$$

yorbasasa June 23, 2017 at 1:51 pm

I will using it if US mint add 1-5% silver on the coin or make it with Bi-metal inside copper outside ring made by titanium.

jim June 23, 2017 at 2:42 pm

14 YEARS????
Looking at the text of the bill I didn’t see anything about eliminating the paper $1 bill so that the coins would get some actual distribution to the public for commerce – the original intent of the founding of the US Mint.
I’m hoping this bill will again languish in committee until time runs out.

Jim June 23, 2017 at 3:28 pm

Seems to me the mint is getting like the Post Office that just issues stamps that are rarely used because of meters and other ways to pay for postage, but a hundred plus stamps a year are issued, and collectors cannot keep up. Now the mint wants to issued unusable dollar coins, and charge more than a dollar for them. They are going to turn off collectors that exist, with no way of enticing younger people who don’t use coins anyway. Enough already!

Seth Riesling June 23, 2017 at 5:18 pm

If this legislation passes both houses of Congress, l hope Trump will veto it. The last thing we need is another $1 coin series that will not circulate!

-NumisDudeTx

a Bob June 23, 2017 at 6:24 pm

Pass. The Native American coins are plenty.
I would like to see a state flora and fauna program for the next go around of quarters.

M YF June 23, 2017 at 7:43 pm

I see an awfully great amount of politically correct subjects being featured and many obsolete people being “honoured” in this series. I also do not like the idea of living persons being portrayed on American coins. The USM could not generate the needed level of interest in the US presidents, I cannot see this subject/series taking off at all.

Munzen June 24, 2017 at 11:45 am

A supply in search of demand, IMHO.

Jim: I agree completely. Stop the wasteful paper dollar, crank up production of $2 bills (with a modernized design, let’s hope), and use the billions of coins that have already been minted.

MY F: The legislation specifically prohibits depicting any person on the coins. And while I agree that the presidential dollars were underwhelming the fault isn’t fully on the Mint’s shoulders. The fact that Congress is in the back pocket of Crane Paper (and the zinc lobby for the cent) has a lot to do with our antiquated system.

Emran Q Ismail June 24, 2017 at 3:34 pm

We need to replace $1 and $2 dollar bills with dollar coins

Michael June 24, 2017 at 6:13 pm

The newly 50 state quarters are horrible and the current dollar issue coins. Now this what the hell are these people thinking ? Coins should be Simplistic with excellent composition to convey the nature of America and the nature of being an American, and last but not least made from a real precious metal such as silver the way coins are suppose to be made out of according to the Constitution……..

jim June 24, 2017 at 11:12 pm

At least with the presidential $1 they ended up minting enough for collectors only. That’s no real public consumption but not over producing and filling up vault space either. Even with a new Treasury Sec. we can hope the minting won’t go overboard.

JAN Fox June 27, 2017 at 11:23 am

Congress doesn’t get it…more coins to end up in storage…USMint in decline…I’m buying bullion issues from world mints like Canada & Australia.interesting designs plus lower mintages… Up

Tom Thumb June 27, 2017 at 2:49 pm

no no no stop the madness, first they need to authorize money to build a storage facility to store them. The presidential dollar storage facility is probably full. only mint them if they stop printing one & two dollar bills.

Munzen June 27, 2017 at 9:59 pm

Emran Q Ismail, Tom Thumb: Based on the experiences of many other countries, fixing the Dollar Bill Problem will require much wider use of the $2 bill (or better yet a new and districtive $2 coin) rather than using $1 coins alone. With both, you need at most two coins to make change for dollar amounts less than $5. Without a $2 denomination, up to four $1 coins are needed and the naysayers’ “pocketful of dollar coins” scenario becomes reality.

There are strange historical reasons* that $2 bills are barely used in this country and that’s been the case for so long it’s easy to forget about the “deuce”. That said, the US is pretty much alone in having a decimal currency system without an actively-circulating $2 coin/bill.

* See “19th-century use of $2 bills at racetracks and brothels”

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