CHICAGO (CBS) — Illinois lawmakers say they are treading carefully as they look at the development of Bitcoin and other so-called cryptocurrency.
The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation issued a report in which it would not classify cryptocurrency as money. But State Representative Jaime Andrade, who chairs the House Committee on Cyber Security, Data Analytics and IT said, hold on a second.READ MORE: University Of Chicago Police Officer Who Shot Man In Hyde Park Shootout Also Shot Student In 2018
Andrade said a Senate bill indirectly recognizes cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin is a new digital currency held electronically with no physical backing. Andrade said he and Representative Mike Zalewski have created a new cryptocurrency subcommittee, which will hold hearings to educate the public.READ MORE: Chicago Weather: Bitter Cold, But Snow Is On The Way
“New York went in and overregulated it and what ended up happening was a lot of those companies left the state,” Andrade said.
They want Illinois to be more welcoming.
Andrade said there are people people who have mortgaged their homes to invest in bitcoin and other digital currencies gaining in popularity. So he wants safeguards. But he said the new cryptocurrency subcommittee will not seek to overregulate.MORE NEWS: Chicago Auto Show's First Look For Charity Gala Fundraiser Set For Feb. 11
“With myself and Zaklewski working on this together I think we will be able to make sure we protect the consumer, but at the same time, we work with the companies and all the other organizations to make sure the state of Illinois is an inviting environment for this type of technology,” he said.