SPRINGFIELD -- Draft legislation would require the state to step in with disaster aid if the federal government denies requests for help.
The bill is in response to the refusal of the Federal Emergency Management Agency to grant assistance to local governments after some two dozen tornadoes swept across the state on Nov. 17.
Federal aid was given to people and businesses affected, and the state has offered $45 million to local governments.
But the measure would require the Illinois Emergency Management Agency to come forward with grants and loans if federal funds are denied.
It cleared the Illinois Senate Wednesday.
Democratic Sen. Dave Koehler of Peoria is the lead sponsor.
He tells the Peoria Journal Star that it's intended to "give a little more comfort to communities."