The United States so far has been very ambiguous regarding the future of cryptocurrency and its regulatory policies within its borders. While the states of Alaska and Idaho have issued official warnings regarding cryptocurrency to its residents, other states have gone even further to deter their residents from investing in the crypto craze. Most notably, the Insurance Division in Iowa has issued a warning which labeled cryptocurrency as carrying “high-risk,” and Utah has even denounced cryptocurrency as a scam. However, Illinois has confirmed that they are in the process of drafting legislation that would welcome cryptocurrency and encourage innovation in the field.
In a surprising move, Illinois legislators have confirmed that they intend to adopt a crypto-friendly attitude that will encourage innovation. According to a state representative, Jaime Andrade, legislators used New York as a case study, where several companies simply left the state, after they introduced overly strict regulation.
Andrade recently responded to a bureaucratic report which declared bitcoin as not adhering to the requirement to be considered a currency. In addition to being a state representative, Andrade also serves as the Chair of the House Committee on Cyber Security. Andrade recently also established a crypto subcommittee along with a colleague, Mike Zalewski, to investigate the possibilities of cryptocurrency and launch a public education initiative about the industry.
According to Andrade, he and Zalewski will be collaborating on the issue. Their goal, according to the representative, is to provide consumer protections, while also partnering with tech startups and other organizations to ensure that Illinois becomes and remains a conducive environment for financial technology innovation.
Zalewski acknowledged the pressure of this ambition, as Illinois is continually striving to make its government operate at optimal efficiency, a comment which perhaps pointed towards the benefits of implementing blockchain technology on a government administrative level. Zalewski added that blockchain technology has the potential to make several industries and branches of government much more efficient.
It is perhaps not so surprising that Illinois would adopt a crypto-friendly attitude, considering that its capital, Chicago, is home to the world’s very first bitcoin futures contracts which appeared on the CME Group and Cboe exchange platforms. Zalewski added that they intend to introduce regulation in such a way that companies and individuals alike would feel comfortable participating in the market, and using cryptocurrency in their day-to-day life.
However, Illinois seems to be in the minority with its crypto-friendly attitude. The states of Alaska and Idaho have recently issued warnings to their residents regarding the dangers involved in the cryptocurrency industry. Meanwhile, regulators from the state of Idaho recently noted that they are concerned that their inhabitants get too caught up in the hype to fully understand the underlying risks involved.
Regulators from Alaska also doubted their inhabitants’ knowledge in the industry. A regulator recently noted that most potential investors don’t even understand the underlying technology or nature of the investment.
Meanwhile, Iowa regulators recently cautioned their residents by releasing a warning which noted that cryptocurrencies were associated with high risks and fraud.
Regulators from Utah have also issued an official warning to potential crypto investors, which cautioned users against being swept up by the crypto craze.
While the activity in Illinois is hopeful for the future of cryptocurrency in the US, it remains to be seen what stances other states take in the future.