In what is seen as an election year move during a late night session, congress voted mostly along party lines to sell the U.S. Mint and its assets to a private corporation headed by the founders of the Poboy Mint.
The measure moved quickly through congress after the bill was introduced by House Banking Committee Chairman Jed Harding. In his floor statement, Harding said that he and his senate counterpart Carroll Cobra have been discussing this with interested companies and other members for more than a year. They see it as a way to make money without making money.
Under the terms of the agreement, the current U.S. Mint properties will be leased to the Mint of the United States Corporation (MUSC), the new entity being created for this venture. They are required to use these facilities for 50 years at which time either party can end the agreement with 120-days notice.
Rep. Brad Hoyle said that he worked hard to ensure that the facility in Philadelphia remained. “The Mint employs a lot of people in Philadelphia,” Hoyle said. “We just couldn’t see all those jobs leaving.”
“Besides,” Hoyle continued, “how would it look if the city where the Mint started would lose the Mint after all these years? It would be devastating to our local economy.”
Dana Gillette, who represents Denver was note as upbeat. Gillette disagrees with the privatization efforts saying, “I know the constitution does not say that the government doesn’t have to own the Mint, but this is a bit too far.”
The transfer to MUSC will begin immediately, ending 224 years of operating as a government entity.