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Illinois House passes bill protecting local libraries from growing threats | Featured stories

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WAND) – Illinois lawmakers hope to pass a plan in the final days of the session to improve security at libraries due to the recent increase in violent threats.

There were at least 22 bomb threats against libraries across the state during 2023 that required a response from local and state police.

People who threaten libraries could soon be charged with a Class 4 felony, similar to someone threatening a school. The legislation would also allow the Illinois Secretary of State’s office to provide grants to local libraries to improve their security.

“School libraries and libraries across the state should not be subject to threats from anyone,” said Rep. Anne Stava-Murray (D-Downers Grove). “This is a place to learn and can be a safe haven where students and people who have nowhere else to go can learn and thrive.”

The proposal was unanimously approved by the House Judiciary-Crime Committee Tuesday morning. It passed the House by a vote of 89-20 before state representatives adjourned Tuesday night.

House Bill 4567 now moves to the Senate for further consideration.

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