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house Bill H.R. 1589

Sharing Terror Threat Info Between DHS, the Intelligence Community, and Local Agencies

Argument in favor

DHS, the intelligence community, and local authorities need to be in regular communication about the threat of chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear terror attacks. This bill provides greater oversight into that process.

John's Opinion
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04/01/2019
Come On?!? Why am I not surprised that all the little children aren’t sharing all their information. You have to support a bill like this for the simple reason that it will save lives. But you hate to support a bill that requires deferent departments work together to do their jobs to the best of their ability.
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Robert's Opinion
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04/01/2019
They should be talking to each other if there is a threat😁
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Helen's Opinion
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04/01/2019
We need combined joint cooperation and transparency, not independent-minded agencies that contribute to the problem with their territorial pissing.
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Argument opposed

Federal and local law enforcement agencies learned their lesson about the consequences of failing to share information after September 11th — they can be trusted to do so in the future without Congress looking over their shoulder.

IllWill's Opinion
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04/01/2019
Maybe Congress should hold a hearing with DHS personnel to see how effective their information sharing is before proposing bills that try to micromanage the Department?
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Doug's Opinion
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04/01/2019
Procedures for this are already in place, if those aren’t working address why, not make more and more laws.
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Thelma's Opinion
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04/02/2019
It is already to their advantage to communicate with each other. There is something suspect about Republicans telling the intelligence community how to conduct business.
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs
  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      Committee on Homeland Security
    IntroducedMarch 7th, 2019

What is House Bill H.R. 1589?

This bill would direct the Dept. of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Office of Intelligence and Analysis (OIA) to take actions aimed at improving information sharing between homeland security intelligence agencies to prevent chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear (CBRN) attacks.

Specifically, it would call on them to:
  • Support homeland security-focused intelligence analysis of terrorists. That includes terrorist claims, and plans  for chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) attacks against the U.S.;
  • Support homeland security-focused risk analysis and risk assessments of hazards by offering relevant quantitative and non-quantitative threat information;
  • Use homeland security intelligence capabilities and structures to enhance prevention, protection, response, and recovery efforts following an attack using CBRN materials; and
  • Share information and provide focused analytical support on these threats to state, local, and tribal authorities, plus other national biosecurity and non-defense stakeholders.

The OIA would coordinate with other DHS divisions, the intelligence community, and federal, state, local, and tribal authorities so those entities to give recommendations on information sharing mechanisms with DHS.

DHS would be required to ensure that homeland security information it analyzes concerning terrorist threats is provided to state, local, and private entities and the public.

Impact

Residents of the U.S.; targets for terrorist attacks; terrorist groups; local authorities; DHS; intelligence community; and Congress.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 1589

The CBO estimated in the last Congress that enacting this bill wouldn't significantly affect spending by DHS.

More Information

In-Depth: Rep. Mark Walker (R-NC) reintroduced this bill from the 115th Congress to require the Dept. of Homeland Security's Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) to conduct analysis of terrorist capabilities related to chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) materials, as well as threats to the homeland from global infectious disease:

"Combatting the threat of terrorism takes an international, national, and most importantly, local approach. This legislation will ensure that government entities correctly share information and communicate to keep our communities safe and prosperous." 

Last Congress, then-Rep. Martha McSally (R-AZ) introduced this bill to address the "very real" threat to the U.S. from terrorist organizations. McSally said, "Countering this threat and mitigating the risk requires continuous sharing and analysis of intelligence."

This bill has one cosponsor, Rep. Peter King (R-NY), in the current session of Congress. Last Congress, it passed by the House on a 420-2 vote with the support of three Republican cosponsors, but didn't receive a Senate vote.


Of Note: The threat of terrorist attacks involving the use of biological or chemical weapons has been a concern for U.S. national security strategists for years.

America suffered its largest biological terror attack in 1984, when a series of deliberate salmonella poisonings infected more than 750 people in Oregon. In the aftermath of September 11th there were several anthrax attacks that killed five people. More recently, it was discovered that ISIS has been attempting to weaponize the bubonic plague for use in terror attacks.

New York Times article revealed that between 2004 and 2011, U.S. and coalition forces in Iraq located stockpiles of chemical weapons, some of which were located in areas ISIS now controls. ISIS is alleged to have used chemical weapons against the Kurds in Iraq and Syria.

Radiological attacks are not likely to cause a large number of casualties, but could incite mass panic and cause lingering damage to local economies, while also requiring an expensive decontamination process. This is in stark contrast to nuclear attacks -- which could result in mass casualties, cause many billions of dollars in damage, and require an even more extensive decontamination effort than a radiological attack.


Media:

Summary by Eric Revell
(Photo Credit: Flickr user John Stennis)

AKA

CBRN Intelligence and Information Sharing Act of 2019

Official Title

To amend the Homeland Security Act of 2002 to establish chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear intelligence and information sharing functions of the Office of Intelligence and Analysis of the Department of Homeland Security and to require dissemination of information analyzed by the Department to entities with responsibilities relating to homeland security, and for other purposes.

    Come On?!? Why am I not surprised that all the little children aren’t sharing all their information. You have to support a bill like this for the simple reason that it will save lives. But you hate to support a bill that requires deferent departments work together to do their jobs to the best of their ability.
    Like (6)
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    Maybe Congress should hold a hearing with DHS personnel to see how effective their information sharing is before proposing bills that try to micromanage the Department?
    Like (8)
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    OMG now we need a bill to order departments to talk to each other. What the hell do you people do in Washington?
    Like (20)
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    Procedures for this are already in place, if those aren’t working address why, not make more and more laws.
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    Yes, but isn’t this already happening. If not why not?
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    OF COURSE THEY SHOULD! IT JUST MAKES SENSE, BUT GOVERNMENT OFTEN DOESN'T MAKE SENSE!
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    All agencies from the top down should know of any and all security threats.
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    They should be talking to each other if there is a threat😁
    Like (3)
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    We need combined joint cooperation and transparency, not independent-minded agencies that contribute to the problem with their territorial pissing.
    Like (3)
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    In past administrations this might not be an issue, but given the current climate in Washington, D. C. it might be essential to layout a roadmap to make sure all information is made known and evaluated. So I would support this legislation. However, if we continue to have a President who disavows crucial information before an executive decision is arrived at and thoughtfully followed through, it will be a mute point.
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    I said yea, but the reason intelligent community’s are separate is so they can’t overthrow the government. I don’t got all day to explain this; you’ll just have to start reading books to understand.
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    It would also really help if the Government stopped completely ignoring American Right Wing/Fascist White Domestic Terrorists Too. That’s the REAL threat to our Nation. They are perpetuating 90% of Terrorists Acts in this country.
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    Would the data address threats to the security of human beings, or would the data address political opinions that make a particular political faction insecure in its control of the government, which should instead represent the people?
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    That’s already happening!
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    I thought this was the whole reason behind W’s reorganization of the federal government. This administration is really messed up
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    I would say yes but needs Bipartisanship.
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    Wouldn’t you want the best information possible this is a no brainer. Of course the morons in the Democratic Congress will shoot this down.
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    We need combined joint cooperation and transparency, not independent-minded agencies that contribute to the problem with their territorial pissing.
    Like (1)
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    More bullshit. We need an actual bill to support communication between these agencies?!
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    It is already to their advantage to communicate with each other. There is something suspect about Republicans telling the intelligence community how to conduct business.
    Like (1)
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