House Passes State and Local Government Cybersecurity Bill; Would Provide Hundreds of Millions in Grant Funds

The House of Representatives has passed H.R. 5823, the State and Local Cybersecurity Improvement Act, and sent it to the Senate for action on October 1st. The bill would establish a $400 million grant program in the Department of Homeland Security that would incentivize states to increase their own cybersecurity funding. In announcing the bill’s passage, co-sponsor Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-MD) noted that “State and local governments have long been a top target for cyber-attacks – as we painfully learned in Baltimore last year. The COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated the threat as hackers exploit overwhelmed governments that are increasingly dependent on digital tools. As a former County Executive, I am proud the House has passed this bipartisan and common-sense legislation that will give state and local governments the resources they need to invest in cybersecurity, protecting their citizens and tax dollars.”
Companion legislation (S 1065) exists in the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, but action is uncertain at this time.

A Fact Sheet of the State and Local Cybersecurity Improvement Act can be found here. Full text of HR 5823 can be found here.