Summary of Coin Related Bills Before the 113th Congress

panamaWhile the United States Mint does have discretion or flexibility in some areas, generally most aspects of circulating and commemorative coinage production are directed by Congress. This includes the denominations authorized for production, the composition and specifications for most coins, the basic designs or themes for some coins, and the commemorative coin programs authorized for each year. As such, following coin related bills introduced in Congress is a way to see what may be in store for United States Mint coins.

In every Congress, there are a large number of bills introduced, but only a few will become law. In order for a bill to become law, it must be passed in the House of Representatives, passed in the Senate, and then signed by the President. An additional criteria which applies to commemorative coin programs is that only two programs may be authorized for each year of issue.

In the 112th Congress, by my count there were 30 different coin related bills introduced, of which five became law. So far, in the 113th Congress there have been 16 different coin related bills introduced (excluding duplicates), with none yet signed into law.

This post will provide a summary of coin related bills before the 113th Congress for Mint News Blog readers. As a reminder, I cover the introduction and progress of coin related bills extensively on Coin Update News. Visit the site for the latest coverage for this and other areas, or sign up for the Coin Update news round up delivered by email three times per week for an update on all of the latest coin news from around the internet.

Proposed Commemorative Coin Programs

S. 203 & H.R. 1653 Pro Football Hall of Fame Commemorative Coin Act [Coin Update coverage]

Up to 50,000 $5 gold coins, 400,000 silver dollars, and 750,000 clad half dollars would be issued in 2017 to recognize and celebrate the Pro Football Hall of Fame. This bill follows the previous approval by Congress of a commemorative coin program for the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

S. 1158 & H.R. 627: National Park Service 100th Anniversary Commemorative Coin Act [Coin Update coverage]

Up to 100,000 $5 gold coins, 500,000 silver dollars, and 750,000 clad half dollars would be issued in 2016 to mark the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the National Park Service.

H.R. 1905 Mother’s Day Centennial Commemorative Coin Act [Coin Update coverage]

Up to 400,000 silver dollars would be issued in 2014 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the establishment of Mother’s Day.

S. 1011 & H.R. 2866: Boys Town Centennial Commemorative Coin Act [Coin Update coverage]

Up to 50,000 $5 gold coins, 350,00 silver dollars, and 300,000 clad half dollars would be issued from 2017 to 2018 to celebrate the centennial of Boys Town. Interestingly, the bill does not provide for surcharges to be added to the cost of each coin, which is highly unusual for a commemorative coin program.

H.R. 2366: World War I American Veterans Centennial Commemorative Coin Act [Coin Update coverage]

Up to 350,000 silver dollars would be issued in 2018 to commemorate the centennial of America’s involvement in World War I and to honor the over 4 million men and women of the United States who served in uniform during the war. The ANA has urged its members to support this bill.

H.R. 2535: American Liberty Coinage and Deficit Reduction Act of 2013 [Mint News Blog post]

The program would include alternating circulating commemorative dimes and quarter dollars featuring depictions of Liberty starting with the dime in 2015. Half dollars would also be issued with a design emblematic of the concept of Liberty, which would be changed every ten years. All of the Liberty themed coins would be issued concurrently with the standard designs featuring Presidential portraits. The program is directly linked to the prospect of increased seigniorage generation for purpose of deficit reduction.

H.R. 2633: Thirteenth Amendment Commemorative Coin Act [Coin Update coverage]

A program including three coins to be issued in 2016 to mark the 150th anniversary of the adoption of the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which officially marked the abolishment of slavery in the United States. The coins would include a bimetallic platinum and gold $50 coin, a $20 gold coin, and silver dollar. The bimetallic coin would be only the second such issue from the US Mint, while the gold and silver coins would each carry uncharacteristic specifications.

H.R. 2760: Panama Canal and Pan-Pacific Exhibition Centennial Celebration Act [Coin Update coverage]

Last year, a similar bill had been introduced seeking commemorative coins to mark the centennial of the Panama-Pacific Exposition and Panama Canal. I had discussed some issues with the potential program as previously proposed. At least one issue has been addressed in the most recent proposal, along with some other changes.

The program would include five different coins would feature the designs of the five classic commemorative coins issued in 1915 for the opening of the Panama Pacific Exposition. The coins include round and octagonal $5 gold coins, a $2.50 gold piece, a gold dollar, and a silver half dollar. The legislation also provides an option for the issuance of clad composition half dollars for circulation.

Other Coin Related Bills

S. 94 A bill to terminate the $1 presidential coin program [Coin Update coverage]

Although the production of Presidential Dollars for circulation has already been suspended, this bill seeks to terminate the program outright.

S. 1105: Currency Optimization, Innovation, and National Savings (COINS) Act [Coin Update coverage]

This bill seeks to phase out $1 bills in favor of $1 coins. Once $1 coins have achieved sufficient market penetration, a deadline would be established after which Federal Reserve Banks may not order any additional $1 bills.

H.R. 77 Free Competition in Currency Act of 2013 [Coin Update coverage]

The bill would repeal legal tender laws and prohibit taxation of certain coins and bullion.

H.R. 220 Stop the Coin Act [Coin Update coverage]

This bill was introduced in response to the idea floated earlier this year that the platinum coins could be minted with a face value of $1 trillion to avert the debt ceiling crisis. The bill would specifically limit the face value of any coin to $200.

H.R. 1218 Commemorative Coins Reform Act of 2013 [Coin Update coverage]

The bill would prohibit the payment of surcharges from commemorative coin programs to private organizations or entities. Since 1982, more than $400 million in surcharges have been raised through commemorative coin programs.

H.R. 1719 Cents and Sensibility Act [Coin Update coverage]

The bill seeks to immediately alter the composition of the cent, nickel, dime, and quarter to American steel. In the last Congress, separate bills had been introduced seeking to change the composition of only the cent and nickel to steel.

S. 768: Sound Money Promotion Act [Coin Update coverage]

The bill seeks to treat gold and silver coins used as legal tender in the same manner as United States currency for taxation purposes. As such, gold and silver coins declared legal tender by the Federal or any State government would not be subject to taxation.

H.R. 1849 & H.R. 2786: Collectible Coin Protection Act [Coin Update coverage]

The existing Hobby Protection Act would be broadened and strengthened by making it unlawful to support or assist anyone who violates the act and adding trademark violations to the act.

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Comments

  1. Gary says

    The only commemorative coin program that rubs me the wrong way is the one for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. This is clearly a lobbying effort of Professional football. The Baseball Hall of Fame coin series is sound because it is to commemorate baseball as a game and pastime and that is what the Baseball Hall of Fame has always done. Sure the Baseball Hall of Fame was originated through Pro Baseball sponsorship, but it has grown to be much more than professional baseball. That is a fact that would be evident to ANYONE who actually visited the Baseball Hall of Fame as I have done.

    The commem program for the Pan Pacific Expo is just another redux of a classic commemorative coin program from the good old days. The coins proposed are ridiculous when consideration is given to what the original artistry would be trivialized to in the format of small coins.

    Under the category of “Other Baseball Bills… they range from the urgently needed for pragmatic reasons to the patently capricious and absurd.

  2. ClevelandRocks says

    @Gary: Football is the #1 spectator sport in the USA (not baseball). Also, football has 99% American players, baseball 77.9% American. Americans spend more money on football apparel than any other sport. Sorry if it rubs you the wrong way that the Mint will be honoring the #1 American sport that has the most % American players.

  3. Gary says

    You are absolutely right Cleveland. American football is the premier CONSUMER sport in America. That s why I fully expect that the Pro Football lobby will get it’s way on this one. Yes Americans do spend more money on football apparel and the like and this will be a hot item in the concessions stands of the NFL and the NFL infuenced “minor” leagues of collegiate football and they will sell at those concession stands quickly at 2 or 3 times the mint issue price. Better yet, the Pro Football Hall of Fame coin should be expanded to include a limited edition subset of all Professional football teams which could feature the current stadium and private entity that owns the stadium (or name of the stadium), colorized with team colors, famous individual team player and last, but not least, first spouse of that favorite player. All kidding aside, I would not buy any commemorative of this program. It’ll be a huge seller with very high mintages most certainly to become mere bullion pieces alongside so much other Pro Football “coins” or “medals”.

  4. Gary says

    BTW —- Baseball is “less” American according your measure of what is “American”. That is because it’s appeal and popularity to people of all ages has long since transcended the “All American” label and is presently widely a world popular PASTIME and sport. Outside of the U.S. American football is more or less just a quaint curiosity because they have the superior sport called Soccer.

  5. VARich says

    @ Darek – was wondering the same, just P, D, & DC; excluding household limited offerings; good luck.

  6. ClevelandRocks says

    Baseball used to be The “American” game, now it’s not.
    Never needed a translator to interview a football player after a game!

    Also, the new MLB stadiums are just as commercial and expensive for fans ($8 beers) as the NFL now.

    At least both baseball and football are truly team sports, unlike basketball…

  7. william says

    Nothing can hold a candle to the arts.

    Give me a “great museum” any day over a sports stadium. Perhaps the mint should mint coins that celebrate the arts and life enhancing activities.

    Music to my ears…

  8. high low silver says

    Lol a bill to end the president coin, and a bill to replace the dollar note with them.

  9. Fosnock says

    Getting off the subject of Marian or Ginger. If they pass the National Park Service Commemorative Coin I wonder if they could do a special set integrating it with the ATB program?

  10. Smiledon says

    “S. 203 & H.R. 1653 Pro Football Hall of Fame Commemorative Coin Act”
    I love football, I get the NFL package, and watch BTN to follow my alma mater.
    However, will we have a brown, oval coin with stripes and lacing?
    My rub with this set is the same with baseball, why would I give money to some place where the players make more in a week then I make in 2-3 years (average base salary). Also, if I want to see the NLF hall of fame, I will go. I will pay the money to travel there, pay to get in, and pay to stay close. I can see (sort of) putting some past great player on the coin. William, I would rather pay the surcharge for some of the great museums in the US. I have paid my hard earned money to see museums in the US. I just have a hard time paying money so that Romeo’s uniform may be in the hall of fame. However, to each there own.
    The other coin programs I would not mind paying to help.

  11. CW says

    Gary, have you visited the pro-football Hall of Fame? Get rid of both of them. We need to stop playing favorites with taxpayer money.

  12. simon says

    As a big fan of the Jackie Robinson commemorative issues I’m very-very surprised that, as yet no one has recommended an Althea Gibson commemorative coin set. Maybe I should write my rep.

  13. Don says

    Gary,

    I got a kick out of your remarks in regard to pro football coin subsets, including teams and stadiums on coins. When I took a trip to Colorado several years ago, I swung over to Denver and visited Coors Field. Unfortunately, as there was a game that night, no tours were being given. However, the gift shop was open, so I bought a .999 silver 1 oz. limited edition (numbered) Coors Field inaugural season “coin”. I figured that this was a souvenir of my Colorado trip. I didn’t go too wrong, as it is a nice 1 oz. piece of silver bullion.

    Pro sports team should do exactly what the Rockies did: commission their own “coins” and medals and then sell them in the gift shop or on-line. And the same applies to the various sports halls of fame.

  14. Hawkster says

    Simon,

    If you make enough of a racket with your rep., maybe the Gibson commem. will come to fruition.

  15. john says

    how come they do make a horse racing commemorative,I think more fans go to horse racings,then other sports.on a weekly base if you add all the race track in the us.

  16. Boz says

    I believe more should be mentioned about the mis-named marketplace fairness act which has passed the senate. It basically would add sales tax to all non-us mint coin transactions except possibly for residents of Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire and Oregon. It is something for all coin collectors to be wary of. There would be no exemptions on ebay or anywhere else due to the “use” taxes that are already on the books.

  17. charles says

    Boz, sellers (including ebay) would be exempt from collecting sales tax if their annual gross sales are less than one million dollars.

  18. Gary says

    LOL john. I wanna see a Redneck toile-toss sports commemorative curved coin. Now THERE’S a real sport! The graceful curves of the toilet seat would complement the concavity of the coin. Of course it should have a rather large hole in the center. The horseshoe shape of the toilet seat would also be emblematic of good luck. The reverse could a-COMMODE-ate practically anything!

  19. ClevelandRocks says

    Ohio State plays in a toilet-bowl shaped stadium!

    Wonder if Michael found out what happened with the WP “second window” craziness….

  20. Coins and Moore says

    Why get rid of Presidential coins for collectors? Doesn’t the program now generate money? Supply is generated to meet dermand so no warehousing billions of coins. They cost less than $.06 in materials plus some mint overhead and sell for over $1 each to collectors. Is there a manganese lobbyist who needs to get to work to fight this bill?

  21. high low silver says

    C&M: I stay away from SBA & President issue dollar coins for the reason of the present bills listed here…… Big gamble IMO.

  22. VARich says

    DOW and S&P 500 at all time highs… Au & Ag seems to be idling by.

    You Gold Hawks out there – we solidly entrenched at a Gold bottom?

  23. thePhelps says

    I thought I read that Nascar is now the #1 spectator sport… we need a #3 oval coin… just sayin.

    I am of the belief that the HOF organizations should be pressing the sports they represent to start funding them if they aren’t getting any monies from them today. If they pass the football one – I’ll buy it on the secondary market as well.

    I am rather surprised to note that the Boys Town coin doesn’t carry a surcharge request… I’d have zero issues with actually paying that one. The only problem is the coin would probably have to have a girl on it to meet the criteria for arts councils..

    Do we really need a coin for Mothers Day? Aren’t flowers and a phone call enough already?

    I’ll take the WWI coin and I vote yes to the Liberty coin act!

  24. high low silver says

    Are you really into commems thePhelps ? Going into the next 5 years, I’m only intrested in 1.

  25. thePhelps says

    hls – yes I enjoy the commemoratives. There have been some really nice ones over the years – I am probably more partial to the classic commemoratives, but my funding always seems to run short when I start looking to closely at them. I have a pretty good modern collection, but no where near complete and very few slabbed.

  26. VARich says

    HLS – While I love my Commemoratives the I’ve collected from the 80’s & 90’s and will hold on to those till the end.., I’ve decided this year to get out of the Comms business. I’m thinking this may be a good entry point to chase a few low dollar Indian Heads over the next year or two. These Comms of the present and future have gotten just too political for me.

    On a positive note – my 2nd day WP order scheduled to ship on 09 August…, well, on Tuesday, 30 July it was rescheduled to ship on Friday, 19 July.., so I’m really happy about that.., excluding the cancel box that still remains and no credit card pinging.., it should show up here any second now!

  27. high low silver says

    I understand VARich…. My WP set should be sent out soon too. Just having a little fun with an Olympic buff….

  28. Hawkster says

    high low:

    A quick quiz: do you know where the swimming hall of fame is located?

    Ans: The International Swimming Hall of Fame is in Fort Lauderdale, FL.

    I’m pretty sure that the Mint has done Olympic coins with swimming/diving images. Enough of those.

  29. Boz says

    Marketplace shrinking act. Yes there would be an exemption for ebay sellers who would not necessarily have to collect and remit to over 11000 different taxing jurisdictions. But the SST will have full access to seller records. If you want another orwellian big brother agency watching you sales, this will be it.

    For the buyer, it is a major tax inrease for anything purchased via the internet or away from their home state. Likewise more people watching everything you do. It will no longer be “voluntary” to pay your use taxes as now.

    Also, how long do you think the seller exemption on ebay will last before it also shrinks and goes away.

    I suspect there are many ebay sellers over 1 million now. It does not take long selling $500 morgans before you cross over.

    As a reminder, products purchased directly from the US mint are always exempt from sales and use taxes. Secondary market and other mint sales are not. Thus bullion coins will become a trap. You will have to prove you paid your GRT when you go to sell them.

  30. Eddie says

    Is this one of the FHOF coin going to be shaped like a football? I would like to see how they pull that off.

  31. Gary says

    I’m just glad I sold off all of my gold in it’s lofty $1700+ levels. There has to be A LOT of collectors and investors stung when buying gold and gold collector coins at those levels and the current level of $1,300 probably will not sustain support for very much longer and seems more in tune to “drift” it’s way downward towards $1,000 or lower in 2014. At the same time silver will shed it’s intimate nature with gold and move upward to a $30 level in 2014. This is because it is a highly desirable industrial metal. Platinum and palladium will overtake gold as a measure of value because of their strategic value in existing and new industry. I would not be surprised if Platinum moved to $1,800 ounce and Palladium to $1,000. These metals are indispensable to recovering economies and a global economy. Of course, if you think the world is just going to blow itself up anyway, well, the value of anything becomes a meaningless issue anyhow.

  32. Gary says

    @Eddie… yes it will be in the shape of a deflated football. It will be made of vulcanized rubber and accompanied with a little hand pump. You can then blow it up to whatever denomination coin you want at any time.

  33. Hawkster says

    The concave Baseball HOF coin can be used as a dish for very miniature candies. But what the heck can you do with a football shaped coin? Punt?

  34. Don says

    Does anyone actually know if the Baseball Hall of Fame will actually be accepting government money in the form of a surcharge on the commemorative coins? Or, did they do the right thing and decline it? Or, even better, did they designate that the surcharge money be used to support a popular cause such as inner- city baseball for disadvantaged youths.

  35. VA Bob says

    13th Amendment commems? Seems a little too PC to me. What about the other Amendments? Seems a First or Second Amendment commem would sell better.

    WP ASE’s arrive tomorrow from 1st day. 5PM order. About time.

  36. Gary says

    A commemorative series to honor the top 10 “too big to fail” investment banking firms should be looked at by the U.S. Mint as a novelty issue.It can commemorate the fact that we are all still around and alive after what had to be the single largest all time ever bank scam ever devised: the derivatives. i’d love to see Wells Fago’s quaint folksy stagecoach, Bank of America logo Goldman Sachs and the rest made into dollar size wafer rounds of recycled used up dollar bills. A portrait of each bank’s CEO can “grace” the other side. Think of the fun mottoes that a series like this could have! Since it is made from junk, no expense to U.S. Mint, it gets rid of the filthy paper notes that get retired. A set of 10 could sell briskly at $10 a pop!

  37. ABC says

    If they drop the presidential dollar program, that would probably end the First Spouse program also, wouldn’t it?

  38. fmtransmitter says

    I do NOT see them dropping the Pres. coins. They’re selling better than ever and are made from cheap zinc, plus there is not many more years to go. They can pump them babies out in the zillions. They may limit production but they will not cancel the series IMO.

  39. someone says

    ABC,

    The presidential dollar program is already running out of steam. We have roughly 2.5 years worth of presidential coins before we run out of deceased presidents to put on them (IIRC no living president can have a coin in the program).

  40. ann says

    The question is would you rather carry nine single dollar paper bills or nine
    single dollar metal coins?

  41. im just a bill says

    ann, that would depend on if i were going to the vending machine or a strip club.

  42. merryxmaxmrscrooge says

    Ha!! Football commem. Why didn’t they think about that one earlier!
    That outta bring in some bucks!!

  43. merryxmaxmrscrooge says

    on a more serious note, where is the MLK 1963-2013 commem? Isn’t this the 50th Ann. of his “I Have a Dream” speech? This tells you where the Mint’s priorities are.

  44. VARich says

    I’m headed to the Union Station sales counter in DC this weekend or next to check it out as I’ve never been there, if anyone wants something checked out, let me know. No, they don’t carry WP sets, already called.

    If someone has been there recently and if it’s not worth the effort, please chime in.

  45. Blackbeard says

    I just received the 2013 american eagle platinum. reverse buffalo next on the list

  46. Blackbeard says

    fmtaransmitter : Just one more year to have this preamble series complete. No visible marks to the coin which is good.

  47. JagFan says

    I’m not a big Commemorative fan and I think the program has already served its purpose.

    They just need to produce one more – the National Debt Coin. All proceeds go towards reducing the National Debt. The coin will provide you with additional discounts at national parks for one year. What the heck?

    It can’t be any worse then buy a commemorative coin at the mint prices and a couple years later be no more valuable than the price of silver..

    What the heck??

  48. fmtransmitter says

    @JagFan: Although I agree with decreasing the debt, I always ask myself how come we never hear about the debt when there is a Republican in office but when a Dem takes over it is all that is mentioned? I do know there is massive amounts of waste of taxpayer dollars despite whomever is in office and it needs to change, and I believe will one day. I do not agree with us Coin Collectors being responsible for decreasing it, I believe this should be up to our elected officials. It seems like WE do this to ourselves at the polls.

  49. Samuel says

    off topic, NGC ER/FR date:

    Silver Eagle 2013-W EAGLE ENHANCED FINISH S$1 (SP) Friday, August 16, 2013 [Extended due to US Mint production/shipping delays]
    Silver Eagle 2013-W EAGLE REVERSE PROOF S$1 (PF) Friday, August 16, 2013 [Extended due to US Mint production/shipping delays]

  50. thePhelps says

    @fmtransmitter – sorry, but the debt isn’t just discussed when a Dem is in office. It gets talked about a lot more because the Dems have traditionally felt no compunction to worry about who has to pay for liberal spending they general cause with social welfare programs. Kinda like right now with QE being used at the rate of 85 billion a month to prop up the economy – eventually that bill will come due.

  51. VA Bob says

    Yesterday I received my 3 WP sets, Perry’s Victory, and Great Basin. I was very, very pleased with the condition of all. Really the only detail I noticed was the WP sets lacquered box stunk to high heaven. They must have sent them from China with the lacquer still drying. I have them sitting open and will for a few days as I am concerned about any gases affecting the finish on the coins over a long period.

  52. nick says

    got my wp set from the mint. reverse of the enhanced uncirculated is scratched. great now I have to see about a return. should be fun

  53. Gary says

    Why are U.S. coins sold in China made presentation boxes anyhow? I never really considered it before. I just assumed all of the presentation packaging was made in the U.S.A.and was more or less on-toxic and safe to handle. Tacky lacquer coated boxes does not sound very safe.

  54. VA Bob says

    Then are nice boxes Gary. The Chinese do make some very nice lacqured boxes (not just for coins). Probably are toxic though and I do agree they should be made here, but it boils down to $$$. That would cut into the Mints profit. Personally I’d prefer if they cut back on the fancy packaging (a lens would be fine) and pass the savings onto the collector. In fact I really like the idea of packaging that must be destroyed to remove the coins, it makes keeping it OGP more valuable in the long run.

  55. Robt says

    Where will they get all the gold and silver from when they are selling it off to the Asian countries….

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