Aguilar’s Bipartisan Bill to Combat Domestic Terror Moves Forward
Today, Rep. Pete Aguilar announced that H.R. 625, the Reporting Efficiently to Proper Officials in Response to Terrorism (REPORT) Act, was voted out of the Homeland Security Committee. The REPORT Act requires the Secretary of Homeland Security to submit a report to Congress after an act of terrorism occurs in the U.S. The report must make recommendations for how to prevent a similar attack in the future and must include input from the United States Attorney General, the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the head of the National Counterterrorism Center. Current law does not require any report to be produced after an act of domestic terrorism.
“As we continue to rebuild from the terror attack in our community, we need to look ahead and work together to prevent this type of tragedy from happening in other neighborhoods across the nation,” said Rep. Aguilar. He continued, “This bill encourages municipalities to share information with each other and learn for one another so we don’t see another San Bernardino, Boston or Orlando. The REPORT Act is about preparedness; by learning from each instance we can work together to find policy solutions to make our communities more secure and keep Americans safe.”
Despite overwhelming gridlock in Washington, Rep. Aguilar is delivering a bill from the minority party with remarkable bipartisan backing. The REPORT Act has regional support from Inland Empire Reps. Calvert and Cook, as well as nine other Republican Members of Congress. The bill was unanimously voted out of the committee. Local law enforcement leaders have expressed support for the bill, including San Bernardino Police Chief Jarrod Burguan and San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon.
Chief Burguan commented, “Unfortunately, we as Americans have become accustomed to hearing about attacks on our Homeland in recent years. It is critically important that we learn from these events and develop strategies to prevent future attacks and refine our response to those that occur. Improving only occurs with learning. As such, I am supportive of this bill that provides Congress a report and recommendations to improve our readiness and capabilities going forward.”
Sheriff McMahon added, “I am in support of this common sense legislation that I believe will enhance law enforcement’s ability to better understand and prepare for future terrorist acts in our country.”
Pete Aguilar represents the City of San Bernardino and authored the bill following the domestic act of terror in his community that killed 14 and wounded 22 on December 2, 2015 at the Inland Regional Center. The legislation was developed through feedback with victims’ families. Last year, Rep. Aguilar worked with Rep. Ken Calvert to help return $1 million in federal funds to help offset the costs incurred from local law enforcement’s heroic response to the terror attack. Rep. Aguilar also assisted in securing a $4 million federal grant from the Department of Justice to help victims’ families and survivors access health care and other resources to recover. The Homeland Security Committee markup of the REPORT Act can be viewed in full here.