New law mandates storm shelters in Illinois schools

New and remodeled schools subject to requirement

January 14, 2015 |
Photo: Charles Powell, FEMA

An Illinois law took effect on Jan. 1 that requires all new and remodeled schools to have storm shelters.

The state is one of a few jurisdictions that mandate a shelter for students for protection from tornadoes. Several lawmakers opposed the measure, calling it an unfunded mandate.

A sponsor of the law countered the objections saying shelters don't need to be elaborate, and that reinforced classrooms could be sufficient. The push to add shelters gained more support after recent tornadoes damaged structures in central and southern areas of the state.


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