Senate Leadership Announces “Protect Act” to Prevent and Thwart Terrorist Attacks in Georgia

January 11, 2017

Atlanta, GA) –Lt. Governor Casey Cagle, along with the Senate Majority Caucus and the sponsor of the legislation Senate Majority Leader Bill Cowsert (R – Athens), unveiled Senate Bill 1, also known as “The Protect Act – Protecting Georgians Against Terrorism,” a measure designed to strengthen Georgia’s homeland security and intelligence gathering efforts.

“We have no greater responsibility than protecting the millions of people who live, work and raise their families in Georgia,” said Lt. Governor Cagle. “Horrific acts constantly remind us that we must leverage every resource available to ensure the safety of Georgia’s citizens and visitors. We must be proactive in our efforts to thwart any and all terroristic threats.”

SB 1 responds to the most recent incidents in the United States and abroad where “lone wolf” terrorists commit acts of violence. This bill establishes a real time channel to communicate – up and down the chain of command – intelligence regarding suspected terroristic threats and activities to a central location, the Georgia Information Sharing and Analysis Center.

“We want Georgia to continue to be at the forefront nationally in protecting our citizens from terrorism,” Sen. Cowsert said. “In the long battle against terrorist activities, the one weapon that has been proven to be consistently effective is active communication and collaboration between local, state, and federal authorities. This legislation helps keep those lines of communication open and running smoothly.”

In addition, the Senate continues the successful work started in 2016 to formalize the Georgia Information Sharing and Analysis Center and ensure they have the needed intelligence and gathering capabilities required to support our state and local law enforcement agencies in their protection of Georgia citizens.