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Illinois Emergency Management Agency - RG 222 | Illinois State Archives

Name: Illinois Emergency Management Agency - RG 222
Variant Name: Illinois Emergency Services and Disaster Agency; Illinois Civil Defense Agency

The Illinois Civil Defense Agency was created by the General Assembly in 1951 to cope with the consequences of possible nuclear attack. It was charged with coordinating state efforts with those of the federal government, local authorities, and political divisions of other states. In the event of a nuclear attack it was to protect the public peace, health, and safety. It was to conduct training and public information programs, survey available resources, make contingency plans, establish mobile support teams and provide needed supplies and equipment following a nuclear attack. Each local political division was authorized to establish its own local organization for civil defense (L. 1951, pp. 1219-1225).

The Illinois Civil Defense Agency was replaced in 1975 by the Illinois Emergency Services and Disaster Agency. Responsibilities of this newly named agency were expanded to include fires, floods, earthquakes, and other natural or manmade disasters in addition to nuclear disasters (P.A. 79-1084, p. 3320). It further was charged in 1984 with cooperating with the Department of Nuclear Safety in planning for means by which to deal with nuclear power plant accidents (P.A. 83-1177, p. 588). And in 1985 it was instructed to develop an Earthquake Awareness Program whereby preparedness literature would be distributed to schools, local governments, community groups, newspapers, and radio and television stations. Together with the State Geological Survey it was to compile a list of strategic manmade structures which were in the greatest danger from earthquakes and to assess the harm their destruction could cause the communities in which they were located (P.A. 84-727, p. 4543).

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