Schroder pushing for state to accept digital currency

Published 6:26 am Monday, May 30, 2022

Schroder said he is working on a House resolution that would charge the treasurer to look into creating a process for the technology to be used.

“Our 20-somethings and 30-somethings are who use that form of currency,” he said. “Just because I’m 60, I don’t want to ignore what’s going on in the generation behind us.”

Schroder said the state needs to position itself to be able to take advantage of cutting edge technologies.

“I’m a professional convenience store shopper,” he said with a laugh. “And it’s amazing to me to watch people pay for everything from their phones. It’s unbelievable.”

Schroder said mobile payment services such as PayPal, Venmo and Zelle are becoming more and more popular with the younger generation.

He said the state needs to be open to accepting more forms of electronic payments, and this resolution will allow his office to come up with the policies and procedures to allow that to happen.

“We need to move into the future and I don’t want Louisiana to be last in everything,” he said. “As technology evolves and provides opportunities we need to have our laws in place to allow us to do that.”

Something else he would like to change is the ability for state boards to host virtual meetings.

“State law doesn’t allow for virtual meetings,” he said. “When the pandemic hit two years ago, we had just gone into session and the state bond commission couldn’t meet. All debt, including the debt in Calcasieu Parish, has to be approved by the state bond commission and after the storms Calcasieu needed financing but the commission didn’t have the ability to meet.”

He said the governor eventually signed an order allowing virtual meetings under an emergency declaration and the commission was able to approve the financing through Zoom meetings. But now that the declaration is no longer in place, virtual meetings cannot be held.

He said a bill to allow the virtual meetings for the bond commission has passed and is waiting the governor’s signature.

“But it’s only for the bond commission, not everyone else” he said. “We’re always behind the eight ball in this state, we worry about all the things that could go wrong and then we miss out. We need to think about the positive things that can happen and take our shot with the negative ones or we’ll never do anything. That needs to change.”

Schroeder said there about 9,000 members who are members of state boards and with that comes fees for travel, gas, hotel rooms and per diems.

All of that could be saved, he said.