Authors: Cary Martin and Robin Beatty, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security (CISA), Emergency Communications Division
Since March 2018, representatives from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) Emergency Communications Division (ECD) and the State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial (SLTT) Governance Guide Working Group worked diligently to update the Emergency Communications Governance Guide for State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial Officials (the Governance Guide), last released in 2015. The Governance Guide aims to provide a resourceful, multifaceted framework that empowers agencies and partners to establish decision making bodies, for the benefit of the Emergency Communications Ecosystem.
Based on results of the SAFECOM Nationwide Survey, challenges for emergency communications partners include involving new entities beyond traditional responders in decision making, and integrating emerging technologies into public safety communications systems. The Governance Guide addresses these issues and encourages the establishment of formal agreements and governance bodies to overcome them.
The efforts of the working group are coming to an end as the Governance Guide nears completion and is submitted for approval of CISA Assistant Director for Emergency Communications, Ron Hewitt; the working group chair, Dan Martinez; SAFECOM Chair Gerald Reardon; and the chair of the National Council of Statewide Interoperability Coordinators (NCSWIC), Nikki Cassingham.
During the working group meeting that took place on November 1st 2018, Mr. Cary Martin recapped the objectives that were established for the SLTT Governance Guide. These included:
- Provide SLTT governing bodies with user-friendly information for creating and managing an emergency communications governance structure
- Incorporate the expertise of the working group comprised of federal and SLTT emergency communications experts
- Highlight tribal emergency communications best practices, lessons learned, capabilities, partnerships, funding opportunities, and challenges
- Address the following capabilities of an interoperable emergency communications enterprise:
- 911, Enhanced-911, and Next Generation-911
- Land Mobile Radio
- Broadband Capabilities-FirstNet
- Alerts, Warnings, and Notifications
- Training and Exercises
- Private Sector and NGO coordination
The Working Group members reviewed the latest draft and adjudicated comments from the in-person meeting in Shawnee, Oklahoma, held on September 11, 2018. Following this discussion, the working group discussed next steps for completing the document.
- The SLTT Governance Guide draft will be presented to and voted on by the SAFECOM and NCSWIC Executive Committees
- The SLTT Governance Guide is expected to be published December 2018
- The final Working Group meeting will be scheduled for January 2018 via webinar, date TBD
For any questions related to the 2018 SLTT Governance Guide, please email CISA ECD at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read about previous Working Group meetings on the SAFECOM Blog:
September 11, 2018: /safecom/blog/2018/09/27/sltt-governance-guide-working-group-meeting-9
April 12, 2018: /safecom/blog/2018/04/30/sltt-governance-guide-meeting-2
March 29, 2018: /safecom/blog/2018/04/04/2018-sltt-governance-guide
For more information on governance resources please visit the SAFECOM website: