TN Department of Homeland Security Unsure of Terrorist Designation Process Under Bill

Apparently, no one involved in the push for passage of HB1353, promoted as an anti-terrorist bill, has talked with officials state Department of Homeland Security about how they would be involved in the envisioned terrorist prosecution process.
But Andrea Zelinski did.
“I don’t fully understand the process that would be used for us to designate the person,” said Rick Shipkowski, the deputy director of the state’s homeland security office.
Under the bill, the Department of Safety and the Department of Homeland Security could recommend individuals or entities for classification as terrorists. If the governor and attorney general then sign off on the recommendation – confidential information is explicitly authorized for use in decision-making – then an array of consequences ensue, ranging from prompt seizure of assets to imprisonment for a Class B felony.
As introduced, the bill specifically referred to following Shariah law as potential targets. That’s been removed by amendment and now any organization organization suspected of terrorist activity would be covered.
More from Andrea’s TNReport, which includes some Q&A with Shipowski:
Right now, twenty percent of tips and reports about possible terrorist activity the state receives are unfounded and thrown out, Shipkowski said.
“I actually had someone tell me one time that a convenience store owner was suspicious because he was Middle Eastern and he smiled all the time. Well, you know that’s not a crime in Tennessee, it’s good for business,” Shipkowski said.
Information the state receives is shared with the Tennessee Fusion Center, a facility jointly operated by the state Office of Homeland Security and Tennessee Bureau of Investigation with analysts from the departments of correction, probation and parole and military. The FBI and the US. Office of Homeland Security also play a role and create a total staff of 38 people at the Center.
The remaining 80 percent of cases are handed over to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and are further explored there. Shipkowski declined to release the actual number of cases the office takes on, but said “very few” of those reports of possible terrorist activity ever prove legitimate.
…Shipkwoski said he doesn’t know exactly how or when his department would recommend the state label someone a terrorist given that the FBI traditionally does the heavy lifting in determining who fits the bill

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