Dollar Clears Congress
By David L. Ganz
A Girl Scout
commemorative and an extension of sales of the
95 percent copper Lincoln cents included in
collector sets were approved Oct. 19 by the U.S.
House of Representatives and Senate.
A Girl Scout silver dollar in 2013 was called
for in the legislation formally presented to
President Barack Obama on Oct. 22.
(Editor's Note: President Obama signed the
measure into law on October 29.)
A Boy Scout coin for 2010 was authorized last
In addition to typical inscriptions, the Girl
Scout coin must by law bear a design “emblematic
of the centennial of the Girl Scouts of the
United States of America.” No more than 350,000
can be produced.
The legislation also has technical amendments
that relate to 2009 commemorative Lincoln cents,
whose popularity has outstripped the Mint’s
production capacity. Congress has given it an
additional six-month lease on life.
A special section of the bill passed by the
Senate and House would authorize “Continued
Issuance of Certain Commemorative Coins Minted
in 2009.” The secretary of the Treasury “may
continue to issue numismatic items that contain
1-cent coins minted in 2009 after Dec. 31, 2009,
until not later than June 30, 2010.”
This was explained in floor debate by Jack
“I want to say that this bill also contains a
pair of coin-related technical corrections, one
of which allows an extension in the sale of the
proof set containing the 2009 Abraham Lincoln
bicentennial one-cent coins because of a
manufacturing glitch which slowed down the
production of approved sets,” he said.
There are four different 2009 proof set products
this year involving the 95 percent copper
collector versions of this year’s Lincoln cents.
• 18-coin clad proof set available since June 1
• 18-coin silver proof set, available since July
• 2009 Lincoln Bicentennial One Cent Proof Set,
available since Aug. 26 ($7.95)
• The Lincoln Coin and Chronicles Set, which is
now sold out.
There is evidently the fear that the Mint will
be unable to fulfill orders by Dec. 31.
It is probably not what they mean, because the
Treasury Secretary can “issue” coins whenever he
wants by minting them and then shipping them to
the Federal Reserve. Coins not shipped by Dec.
31 that are in process can be shipped Jan. 3 or
any other date.
What would be impermissible would be to strike
coins without either a congressionally sponsored
law, or finding by the secretary of the
Treasury, usually reserved for a circulating
coin crisis. It has not been done before for
proof coins, but might be, using a “date freeze”
originally used in 1964-1965.
There’s also a provision that redistributes
revenue from the 400th anniversary of Jamestown
commemorative. “Distribution of Surcharges. –
Section 7 of the Jamestown 400th Anniversary
Commemorative Coin Act of 2004 (31 U.S.C. 5112
nt.) is amended – (1) in subsection (b)(2)(B),
by striking “in equal shares’’ and ...
inserting... “(I) 2/3 to the Association for the
Preservation of Virginia Antiquities. “(ii) 1/3
to the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation of the
Commonwealth of Virginia.’’