13 March 2017
In Wake of Bomb Threats to Jewish Centers, Schools Lang Pushes $25 Million Anti-Terrorism Effort to Bolster Non-Profits’ Security
(Springfield, IL) – In the wake of a wave of bomb threats nationally to Jewish Centers, Jewish schools, including Chicago, and vandalized Jewish cemeteries, House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang (D-Skokie) rolled out legislation on Monday to provide $25 million in “emergency funding” to Illinois non-profits threatened by terrorism in order to bolster security at their facilities.
The legislation, House Bill 4011 and House Bill 4012, would establish a $25 million grant making program in the Illinois Secretary of State’s office to provide financial assistance “on an emergency basis” to Illinois non-profits to blunt or respond to “acts of terrorism” against their facilities.
“In the aftermath of a presidential campaign in which anti-Semitic dog whistles were blown – and tweeted – regularly by Donald Trump, his white nationalist supporters have felt emboldened to lob hoax bomb threats at Jewish institutions,” said Lang. “I am unwilling to risk that these domestic terrorists will be content with hoax bomb threats; so, that’s why I am pushing a fast-track, $25 million anti-terrorist program to enhance security at non-profit facilities targeted by terrorism.”
According to the legislation, the Secretary of State can authorize a grant of any amount based on a detailed threat assessment submitted by non-profit applicants.
Lang applauded Governor Bruce Rauner’s stand taken against “hate” at the Illinois Holocaust Museum Humanitarian Awards dinner last week and looks forward to governor’s support for his legislative proposal.
“I am encouraged by the governor’s comments made at the Holocaust Museum dinner – ‘We cannot stay silent on hate. We cannot stay silent when families in our community are in danger,’” said Lang. “I’m sure that he’ll want to back up those words with action; so, I look forward to his support for my legislation.”
Lang expects action on his plan when the legislature reconvenes in Springfield this week.