SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WTVO) — The Illinois House passed a bill Wednesday that would withhold state funding from any public or school library that removes controversial books from their shelves.

Illinois Secretary of State Alexi Giannoulias announced the legislation earlier this month, which would make libraries ineligible for state-funded grants if they remove books because of “partisan or personal disapproval” or fail to issue a statement against banning books.

Giannoulias said the Illinois Library System Act “comes after extremist groups — including the far-right nationalist group, the Proud Boys — have targeted Illinois libraries, divided communities and harassed librarians across the country, even though the books are not required reading for anyone.”

“We’re seeing these challenges arise in almost every state of the union,” said Deborah Caldwell-Stone, director of the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom. “It’s a national phenomenon.”

The two most challenged books on the American Library Association’s top 10 list have been in the news often: Maia Kobabe’s graphic memoir about sexual identity, “Gender Queer,” and Jonathan Evison’s “Lawn Boy,” a coming-of-age novel narrated by a young gay man.

Parents have complained that the books contain sexually explicit material and are targeted at children.

Last year, the Harlem School District in Machesney Park banned “Gender Queer,” saying the graphic novel contains graphic illustrations of sexual acts, which some said are not appropriate for the age group, adding that if a student chooses to, they can get the book at the public library.

Others on the ALA list, virtually all cited for LGBTQ or racial themes, include Angie Thomas’ bestselling “The Hate U Give,” centered on a police shooting of a Black teen; George Johnson’s “All Boys Aren’t Blue,” Juno Dawson’s “This Book Is Gay” and Susan Kuklin’s “Beyond Magenta.” Two older works that have been on the list before also appear: Sherman Alexie’s autobiographical novel “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian” and Nobel laureate Toni Morrison’s debut novel “The Bluest Eye.”

While the Illinois legislation appears poised at protecting books that deal with controversial issues such as sex and race, conservative groups point to stores, such as Amazon, removing books for sale that offer countering viewpoints, or changing the written text of classic books even before they appear on shelves.

Online retailer Amazon has received criticism for removing books such as “When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Movement,” which highlights contradictions between “the media’s sunny depiction [of gender transition] and the often sad realities of gender-identity struggles.” Amazon said the book, which had been on sale for three years, fell under a broad guideline that restricts “content that we determine is hate speech, promotes the abuse or sexual exploitation of children, contains pornography, glorifies rape or pedophilia, advocates terrorism, or other material we deem inappropriate or offensive.”

Republican senators claimed Amazon was “openly signaling to conservative Americans that their views are not welcome on its platforms.”

Ian Fleming Publications announced it is rewriting classic James Bond novels after a review by “sensitivity readers,” and Roald Dahl books, such as “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” are being released in new versions that omit “offensive language,” such as describing one character as fat.

In 2021, six children’s books by famed children’s author Dr. Seuss were removed from publication due to “racist and insensitive imagery“.

Laura Ingalls Wilder’s portrayals of Native Americans in her “Little House On the Prairie” novels have been faulted so often that the American Library Association removed her name in 2018 from a lifetime achievement award it gives out each year.

Currently, Illinois law does not contain language related to book banning or eligibility for state grants that restrict access. Last fiscal year, the Secretary of State’s office awarded 1,631 grants to Illinois libraries totaling more than $62 million. Of those, 97 percent of the grants were awarded to public and school libraries, with public libraries receiving 877 grants and school libraries securing 712 grants.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.