This is the accessible text file for GAO report number GAO-10-463R 
entitled 'Emergency Communications: Establishment of the Emergency 
Communications Preparedness Center and Related Interagency 
Coordination Challenges' which was released on March 3, 2010. 

This text file was formatted by the U.S. Government Accountability 
Office (GAO) to be accessible to users with visual impairments, as 
part of a longer term project to improve GAO products' accessibility. 
Every attempt has been made to maintain the structural and data 
integrity of the original printed product. Accessibility features, 
such as text descriptions of tables, consecutively numbered footnotes 
placed at the end of the file, and the text of agency comment letters, 
are provided but may not exactly duplicate the presentation or format 
of the printed version. The portable document format (PDF) file is an 
exact electronic replica of the printed version. We welcome your 
feedback. Please E-mail your comments regarding the contents or 
accessibility features of this document to 

This is a work of the U.S. government and is not subject to copyright 
protection in the United States. It may be reproduced and distributed 
in its entirety without further permission from GAO. Because this work 
may contain copyrighted images or other material, permission from the 
copyright holder may be necessary if you wish to reproduce this 
material separately. 


United States Government Accountability Office: 
Washington, DC 20548: 

March 3, 2010: 

The Honorable Robert C. Byrd:
The Honorable George Voinovich: 
Ranking Member:
Subcommittee on Homeland Security: 
Committee on Appropriations:
United States Senate: 

The Honorable David E. Price:
The Honorable Harold Rogers:
Ranking Member:
Subcommittee on Homeland Security: 
Committee on Appropriations:
House of Representatives: 

Subject: Emergency Communications: Establishment of the Emergency 
Communications Preparedness Center and Related Interagency 
Coordination Challenges: 

This letter formally transmits the enclosed briefing in response to a 
mandate in the conference report (No. 111-298) and senate report (No. 
111-31) to the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 
2010. In accordance with the direction in those reports, and in 
consultation with your staff, we are reporting on (1) actions taken by 
the Department of Homeland Security's Office of Emergency 
Communications (OEC) to establish the Emergency Communications 
Preparedness Center (ECPC) and (2) challenges OEC and ECPC officials 
reported that could affect interagency coordination through ECPC. For 
a summary of the results of our work, see slide 8. Based on the 
results of our review, we are not making any recommendations for 
congressional consideration or agency action. 

We are sending copies of this report to the appropriate congressional 
committees. We are also sending copies to the Honorable Janet 
Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of 
Homeland Security. This report will also be available at no charge on 
our Web site at Should you or your staff have 
questions concerning this report, please contact me at (202) 512-8777 
or Contact points for our Offices of: 

Congressional Relations and Public Affairs may be found on the last 
page of this report. Key contributors to this report were Leyla Kazaz, 
Assistant Director; R. Denton Herring, Analyst-in-Charge; David 
Alexander; Jamie Berryhill; Christine Davis; and Adam Vogt. 

Signed by: 

William O. Jenkins, Jr.
Director, Homeland Security and Justice Issues: 


[End of section] 

Enclosure: Emergency Communications: 

Establishment of the Emergency Communications Preparedness Center and 
Related Interagency Coordination Challenges: 

Briefing to the Subcommittees on Homeland Security, Committees on 
Appropriations, United States Senate and House of Representatives: 

February 26, 2010: 

Outline of Briefing: 
* Objectives; 
* Scope and Methodology; 
* Summary; 
* Background; 
* Findings; 
* Agency Comments. 


The tragic events of 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina highlighted the 
critical importance of having effective communications systems for law 
enforcement, public safety, and emergency response agencies, including 
federal agencies with such responsibilities. To effectively respond to 
events such as natural disasters and domestic terrorism, these 
agencies need reliable systems that enable communication with their 
counterparts in other disciplines and jurisdictions. 

In response to Hurricane Katrina, Congress enacted the Post-Katrina 
Emergency Management Reform Act of 2006 (Post-Katrina Act), which 
amended the Homeland Security Act of 2002 and, among other things: 

* established the Office of Emergency Communications (OEC) within the 
Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and; 

* required federal agencies, including DHS, to establish and jointly 
operate the Emergency Communications Preparedness Center (ECPC). 
[Footnote 1] 

ECPC is an interagency body intended to serve as the focal point and 
clearinghouse for intergovernmental emergency communications 
information sharing, and is required to submit to Congress an annual 
strategic assessment on federal coordination to advance emergency 

ECPC is composed of 5 statutorily-mandated members—DHS, the Federal 
Communications Commission, and the Departments of Commerce, Defense, 
and Justice—and 7 additional departments and agencies which were 
invited to participate as members. The 12 members play kw roles in 
emergency communications efforts.[Footnote 2] In accordance with the 
ECPC Charter, OEC administers ECPC on behalf of the Secretary of 
Homeland Security. 

Citing concerns about the federal government's progress in 
implementing interoperability among federal agencies and the amount of 
time it was taking to establish ECPC, congressional appropriators 
directed GAO to evaluate the progress made in establishing ECPC and 
identify any obstacles to federal agency coordination through ECPC, as 
discussed in the conference report (No. 111-298) and senate report 
(No. 111-31) to the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations 
Act, 2010. 


In accordance with this mandate, our objectives are to determine: 

1) What actions, if any has OEC taken to establish EQPC since the 
enactment of the Post-Katrina Act in October 2006? 

2) What if any challenges did OEC and ECPC officials report that could 
affect federal interagency coordination through ECPC? 

Scope and Methodology: 

To determine the actions taken to establish ECPC since October 2006, 
we reviewed ECPC's Charter, documentation from agencies detailing 
their agreement with the charter, and rosters of ECPC's Executive and 
Steering Committees. We also reviewed the Executive Committee Action 
Items list and OEC's progress report on goals and objectives contained 
in the National Emergency Communications Plan (NECP), which is 
intended to enhance emergency communications. 

To determine challenges that OEC and ECPC officials identified that 
could impact coordination through ECPC, we reviewed the charter to 
examine ECPC's objective to establish relationships with similar 
entities involved in emergency communications. We also reviewed GAO 
reports on interagency coordination and collaboration with 
stakeholders.[Footnote 3] 

In addition, we interviewed officials from OEC and then, in a group 
setting, interviewed officials from 11 of the 12 member ECPC agencies, 
to discuss the process of establishing ECPC, and to determine what, if 
any, challenges they have identified that could impact coordination. 
The 12 ECPC member agencies were invited to participate in the group 
interview; however, 1 member agency did not participate. During this 
interview, following officials' answers to our questions, we provided 
summations to ensure that our understanding of the answers accurately 
represented the perspectives of all ECPC officials that were present. 

We conducted our work from November 2009 through February 2010 in 
accordance with all sections of GAO's Quality Assurance Framework that 
are relevant to our objectives. The framework requires that we plan 
and perform the engagement to obtain sufficient and appropriate 
evidence to meet our stated objectives and to discuss any limitations 
in our work. We believe that the information and data obtained, and 
the analysis conducted, provide a reasonable basis for any findings 
and conclusions in this product. 


OEC worked with the 12 charter members to establish ECPC by approving 
its Charter during the summer of 2009 and holding the first Executive 
Committee meeting on October 21, 2009. The Post-Katrina Act which was 
signed into law on October 4, 2006, did not provide a deadline for 
ECPC to commence operations. Approximately 6 months after OEC began 
operations in April 2007, officials from OEC and other key departments 
and agencies started working to define ECPC's mission, interpret 
Congress' intent, consider issues related to their legal authorities, 
and draft and gain concurrence on the ECPC Charter. Current ECPC-
efforts include working to refine its mission, identifying short-term 
and long-term action items, and implementing tasks associated with 
ECPC-related milestones in the NECP. 

OEC and ECPC officials we interviewed reported that ECPC faces 
interagency coordination challenges in obtaining agreement among ECPC 
members on group decisions, gaining the acceptance of it stakeholders 
when promoting a strategy to achieve interoperable communications, 
providing and demonstrating value to its members, maturing as an 
interagency body, and working to define its relationships with other 
organizations with similar goals and objectives. 

We requested comments on a draft of this briefing from DHS. The 
department did not provide written comments to include in our report, 
but provided technical comments which we incorporated as appropriate. 


ECPC is governed by an Executive Committee, which consists of 
representatives at the under secretary level from the 12 respective 
charter members. In addition, an ECPC Steering Committee, which 
consists of representatives at the assistant secretary level, was 
established to implement policies approved by the Executive Committee 
and coordinate with OEC in administering ECPC. 

According to ECPC's Charter, its mission is to support and promote the 
capability of emergency response providers and associated government 
officials to continue to communicate in anticipation of, and response 
to, natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other man-made 
disasters, and to support and promote interoperable emergency 
communications by:[Footnote 4] 

1. serving as the focal point for interagency efforts and as a 
clearinghouse for all relevant intergovernmental emergency 
communications information and, 

2. consistent with NECP, preparing an annual strategic assessment on 
the coordination efforts of federal departments and agencies. 

NECP, which was issued in July 2008, includes strategic goals and 
national objectives to enhance governance, planning, technology, 
training and exercises, and disaster communications capabilities. NECP 
provides recommendations and associated milestones to guide emergency 
responders and relevant government officials to make measurable 
improvements in emergency communications over a 5-year period. 

Establishment of ECPC: Charter Approval: 

According to OEC, the 12 ECPC members concurred with the Charter 
during the summer of 2009 and established ECPC when the Executive 
Committee held its first meeting on October 21, 2009. 

The Post-Katrina Act was signed into law October 4, 2006, requiring 
the establishment of OEC and ECPC. OEC began operating on Aril 1,2007, 
within DHS's National Protection and Programs Directorate's NPPD) 
Office of Cybersecurity and Communications. Approximately months later 
in October 2007, OEC officials began working to establish ECPC. OEC 
officials worked with prospective ECPC members to define its mission, 
interpret Congress' intent in establishing ECPC, consider issues 
related to legal authorities, and draft and gain concurrence on 
finalizing the Charter. 

* October 2007 — January 2008: OEC officials stated that the effort to 
establish ECPC started in October 2007 6 months after OEC began 
operating. For approximately 4 months, OEC worked to define how ECPC; 
should be established, including consideration of its initial 
activities and the scope of its mission. OEC officials stated that 
during this period they held discussions to determine the ma's and 
objectives of ECPC and initiated a legal review to ensure that ECPC; 
did not impinge on the authority or other agencies. 

* January 2008 — December 2008: OEC officials stated that DHS's 
process for reviewing the draft ECPC Charter and addressing questions 
regarding the scope of ECPC's authorities took longer than 
anticipated. During this time, DHS's General Counsel undertook a legal 
review to determine how to interpret Congress' intent in establishing 
ECPC and how to appropriately follow the congressional mandate. 

* December 2008 — October 21, 2009: OEC officials gained clearance on 
the draft charter from DHS in December 2008 and worked to gain 
concurrence from members of ECPC. Officials noted that the change in 
presidential administrations during this time resulted in delays 
finalizing the Executive Committee's roster because the committee is 
comprised of high-ranking agency officials, some of whom are political 
appointees. For instance, the DHS Under Secretary for NPPD, who serves 
as chair of the Executive Committee, was not confirmed until June 2009. 

Establishment of ECPC: Current Efforts: Working to Define Its Mission 
and Scope: 

ECPC's mission, in part, is to establish a clearinghouse to build a 
collection of emergency communications information. An initial version 
of the clearinghouse is housed within the Homeland Security 
Information Network (HSIN),which is DHS's primary information 
technology system for sharing terrorism and related information with 
federal, state, and local agencies, among others. OEC officials stated 
that while OEC has a definition of emergency communications, ECPC has 
not yet agreed on one, noting that without a definition it will be 
difficult to determine what types of interoperability plans and other 
relevant information should be submitted to the clearinghouse. 

ECPC is working to define the scope of emergency communications in 
order to establish parameters for its mission. For example, OEC 
officials said that federal departments' continuity of operations 
plans in the event of an influenza pandemic may or may not be 
considered an emergency communications plan. To further this effort, 
ECPC intends to form a working group. Preliminary discussions within 
the ECPC Steering Committee indicate a consensus that the scope of 
emergency communications must be defined broadly. 

Establishment of ECPC: Current Efforts: Short-term Action Items: 

At its inaugural meeting on October 21, 2009, ECPC's Executive 
Committee identified the following short-term action items: 

1) Coordinate member comments on the Federal Communications 
Commission's National Broadband Plan (NBP), an effort to ensure that 
every American has access to broadband capability. 

2) Identify legal and regulatory barriers to common acquisition 
approaches and advocate for the removal of such barriers. 

3) Submit grant coordination requirements for the President's proposed 
fiscal year 2011 budget.[Footnote 5] 

4) Refine ECPC's objectives, goals, and common definitions. 

OEC officials stated that the Executive Committee's goal was to 
establish these action items during their first meeting, but due to 
the scope of these actions, they need additional information to 
establish feasible time frames for completion. The Steering Committee 
has been tasked with this effort. 

Establishment of ECPC: Current Efforts: Long-term Action Items: 

ECPC's Executive Committee identified the following long-term action 

1) Coordinate federal emergency communications grants guidance. 

2) Consider developing methods to support identification of 
opportunities to share infrastructure and leverage resources. 
[Footnote 6] 

3) Provide federal input into existing national communications 
planning activities, including broadband planning and national 
emergency communications planning. 

4) Assess the timeliness of efforts to establish emergency 
communications standards, and standards compliance to drive 
operability and interoperability improvements. 

5) Refine ECPC's long-term strategic agenda,,which should include a 
focus on coordinating grants guidance and identifying opportunities to 
share infrastructure. 

OEC officials stated that the Executive Committee's goal was to 
establish these action items during their first meeting, but due to 
the scope of these actions they need additional information to 
establish feasible time frames for completion. The Steering Committee 
has been tasked with this effort. 

Establishment of ECPC: Current Efforts: Status of NECP Milestones 
Related to ECPC: 

Table 1: Status of NECP Milestones Related to ECPC: 

NECP milestone: Establish a catalog of technical assistance (TA) 
programs to ensure awareness of available TA and reduce duplication; 
NECP due date:[Footnote 7] January 2009; 
Status: According to DHS' NECP milestone progress report, this was 
completed on March 31, 2009, and a catalog was created. OEC officials 
stated that the creation of the catalog helped federal partners become 
more aware of other agencies' TA programs. 

NECP milestone: Federal departments and agencies use ECPC as the 
central coordinating body for federal input into, and comments on, 
emergency communications projects, plans, and reports; 
NECP due date: July 2009; 
Status: The ECPC working group, the predecessor of the ECPC Executive 
Committee, coordinated federal input for NECP. Also, ECPC coordinated 
federal input for NBP. 

NECP milestone: 
ECPC is to submit its strategic assessment to Congress detailing 
progress to date, remaining obstacles to interoperability, and federal 
coordination efforts; 
NECP due date: July 2009; 
Status: OEC officials expect completion by December 2010. ECPC plans 
to validate methods for conducting the assessment and have the Office 
of Management & Budget, National Security Staff, and Office of Science 
& Technology Policy review the assessment. 

NECP milestone: OEC is to establish a method for coordination and 
sharing of information between ECPC and Regional Emergency 
Communication Coordination Working Groups (RECCWG);[Footnote 8] 
NECP due date: July 2009; 
Status: OEC officials stated no time frame for completion of this 
milestone. ECPC and RECCWGs are in the early stages of development. 
DHS intends to refine its own coordination and information-sharing 
relationships with ECPC and RECCWGs prior to establishing a method for 
them to coordinate with one another. 

NECP milestone: ECPC is to stand up a working group to coordinate 
grant priorities across federal grant programs; 
NECP due date: July 2009; 
Status: The working group has been established and is revising a plan 
to be used to promote common grant guidance across federal agencies 
that is to be available in the clearinghouse. 

NECP milestone: Begin operations for the ECPC Web-based clearinghouse; 
NECP due date: January 2010; 
Status: According to OEC officials, an initial version of the 	
clearinghouse is operational within HSIN; however, the clearinghouse 
will not be available for interagency use until March 2010. In 
addition, OEC officials said they are planning a separate rollout for 
a second, more user-friendly version of the clearinghouse at a later 

NECP milestone: OEC is to establish outreach activities to ensure that 
stakeholders across the nation are aware of the availability of ECPC 
clearinghouse resources; 
NECP due date: July 2010; 
Status: OEC officials have begun work to complete this task by July 
2010; however, they are waiting for a more user-friendly clearinghouse 
before they promote its availability. 

Source: GAO analysis of NECP, OEC Progress Report on NECP Milestones, 
and other information from OEC.	 

[End of table] 

ECPC Challenges: Obtaining Agreement Among Members: 

ECPC officials stated that ECPC cannot direct or require its members 
or stakeholders, such as other federal, state, or local agencies with 
a role in emergency communications, to take any specific actions in 
response to its recommendations. Therefore, ECPC's goal of providing 
input and recommendations regarding the establishment of 
interoperability and operability goals must be carried out in the 
absence of compulsory authority. Our prior work has shown that 
coordination is critical when an entity does not have the authority to 
compel others to comply with its requirements.[Footnote 9] 

ECPC officials we interviewed stated that the current consensus-
building approach to decision making assists in obtaining "buy-in" 
from members and is more beneficial than an authoritative approach. In 
addition, they stated that the purpose of ECPC is to promote a common 
understanding among emergency communications entities that are working 
to achieve interoperable communications. 

ECPC officials noted that ECPC's process of gaining consensus on 
decisions should help defuse interagency disputes before they arise. 
OEC officials noted that ECPC has had no major disputes to date and 
has no plans to develop a dispute resolution process. 

OEC officials believe that the high-level composition of the Executive 
Committee provides greater assurance that Executive Committee members 
will be able to follow through on their respective decisions within 
their own agencies. 

ECPC Challenges: Gaining Acceptance from Stakeholders: 

ECPC officials we interviewed said they intend to promote a strategy 
of working towards interoperable communications that stakeholders, 
including state and local governments, will want to accept, and not to 
try to force stakeholders to comply with its guidance. OEC officials 
believe that stakeholders will want to coordinate with ECPC because it 
plans to work across federal agencies to unify emergency 
communications grant guidance. According to OEC officials, state and 
local government officials are often frustrated when grant guidance 
from various federal departments and agencies conflicts and are 
supportive of efforts to unify grant guidance across departments and 

OEC officials stated that a working group is revising a common set of 
interoperable emergency communications grant guidance for all federal 
agencies, to reduce overlap and conflicting requirements, which should 
enable stakeholders to better coordinate and target their grant 
dollars. The plan to include this guidance in the clearinghouse, 
making it available to ECPC stakeholders once stakeholders are able to 
access the clearinghouse. These officials believe this will help to 
streamline grant guidance and raise awareness about available grants. 

ECPC Challenges: Providing and Demonstrating Value: 

ECPC members noted that the ability to add value to its members is 
important to sustaining and maintaining effective coordination among 
ECPC members. ECPC officials we interviewed stated that they are 
realizing, or expect to realize, value through their continued 
participation in ECPC. They provided three examples of how they are 
gaining or expect to gain value: 

1) The Department of Health and Human Services should be able to
provide better guidance to hospitals on what types of emergency 
communications equipment other first responders are procuring. ECPC 
officials noted that this will assist hospitals in purchasing 
equipment that will be interoperable.with other first responders who 
receive federal emergency communications grants. 

2) ECPC facilitated the Commerce Department's National 
Telecommunications and Information Administration's effort to collect 
comments from a wider array of stakeholders on the proposed National 
Broadband Plan. 

3) ECPC officials said that the Department of Agriculture plans to use 
the clearinghouse to provide guidance to firefighfers on how to 
develop cross-jurisdictional memorandums of understanding that will 
create a governance structure for multi-jurisdiction events such as 

ECPC Challenges: Maturing as an Interagency Body: 

Our past work has shown that addressing challenges related to 
organizational stability helps to build the credibility needed to 
establish effective partnerships.[Footnote 10] While ECPC is in the 
early stages of development, OEC officials said that ECPC's goals and 
objectives will be refined as the interagency body continues to 
mature. In addition, OEC officials said that they plan to develop an 
ECPC Program Management Plan within which they would list ECPC's goals 
and objectives. They intend to incorporate some best practices, 
identified in our prior work, for sustaining effective interagency 
collaboration into this plan.[Footnote 11] 

* These best practices may include: 1) defining and articulating a 
common outcome or mission, 2) developing a strategy to align resources 
in support of the mission, 3) defining partners' roles and 
responsibilities, 4) establishing methods to work across agency 
boundaries, and 5) developing mechanisms to monitor, evaluate, and 
report on the results of efforts. 

Although ECPC has yet to develop a Program Management Plan, OEC 
officials reported that ECPC has taken steps to incorporate some of 
these best practices into the management of ECPC. For example, ECPC 
defined a common outcome or mission within the charter. ECPC also 
established methods to work across agency boundaries by forming 
interagency working groups to address issues as directed by the 
Executive Committee. 

ECPC Challenges: Working to Define Relationships with Similar Entities: 

ECPC officials we interviewed stated that ECPC has to refine its own 
goals and objectives while building relationships with similar 
entities involved in emergency communications. The purpose of 
maintaining these relationships is to obtain feedback on ECPC's 
activities and deliverables, including input to NECP, and to share 
information on interoperable emergency communications matters. OEC 
officials stated that building relationships with similar entities 
will help streamline emergency communications guidance and provide 
federal, state, and local governments an opportunity to work towards 

OEC officials used ECPC's relationship with SAFECOM to illustrate the 
value of building relationships with other entities that have similar 
goals and objectives. SAFECOM is a DHS communications program that 
provides research, development, testing and evaluation, guidance, 
tools, and templates on communications-related issues to emergency 
response agencies. Its goal is to assist state and local first 
responders in the planning and implementation of interoperable 

OEC officials noted that while SAFECOM's mission is focused on 
coordination among state and local first responder agencies, not all 
those with responsibilities for emergency response coordinate with 
SAFECOM. For example, hospitals, which invest federal grant dollars in 
emergency communications equipment, do not have the benefit of a 
partnership with SAFECOM that could provide them with an understanding 
of how other state and local first responders are using their grant 
funds to achieve interoperable communications. OEC officials said that 
ECPC should be able to communicate with hospital—by leveraging 
hospitals' relationships with the Department of Health and Human 
Services—about how other first responders are using their grant funds 
to achieve interoperable communications. 

According to ECPC's Charter, ECPC plans to maintain a close 
information-sharing relationship with other entities including: 

* The National Communications System's (NCS) National Coordinating 
Center for Telecommunications, which has a mission to assist in the 
initiation, coordination, restoration, and reconstitution of national 
security or emergency preparedness telecommunications services or 
facilities and, coordinate and plan emergency preparedness 
communications systems. 

* NCS's Committee of Principals, which has a, mission to be a forum 
for members to review, evaluate and present views and
recommendations on national security and emergency preparedness 
telecommunications programs. 

* The Federal Partnership for Interoperable Communications, which 
works to foster federal wireless communications interoperability 
through leveraging intergovernmental cooperation. 

* The Communications Sector Coordinating Council, a stakeholder body 
with, leadership from large telecommunication corporations. This 
public-private partnership's goal is to protect teleCommunications 
infrastructure from harm and to rapidly restore infrastructure after a 

Agency Comments: 

We requested comments on a draft of this briefing from DHS. The 
department did not provide written comments to include in our report. 
However, in an e-mail received on February 19, 2010, the DHS liaison 
said that DHS had no substantive comments on the report but provided 
technical comments, which we have incorporated as appropriate. 

[End of briefing slides] 


[1] The Post-Katrina Act was enacted on October 4, 2006. The 
provisions establishing OEC and ECPC appear at 6 U.S.C. §§ 571, 576. 

[2] ECPC's 12 charter members are the Departments of Agriculture, 
Commerce, Defense, Energy, Health and Human Services, Homeland 
Security, Interior, Justice, Labor, and the Treasury, as well as the 
Federal Communications Commission and the General Services 

[3] GAO, Results Oriented Government Practices That Can Help Enhance 
and Sustain Collaboration among Federal Agencies, [hyperlink,] (Washington, D.C.: October 
2005); GAO, Critical Infrastructure Protection: Department of Homeland 
Security Faces Challenges in Fulfilling Cybersecurity 
Responsibilities, [hyperlink,] 
(Washington, D.C.: May 2005); and GAO, National Preparedness: FEMA Has 
Made Progress, but Needs to Complete and Integrate Planning, Exercise, 
and Assessment Efforts, [hyperlink,] (Washington, D.C.: April 2009). 

[4] Interoperability is the ability of emergency responders to 
communicate among jurisdictions, disciplines, and levels of 
government, using a variety of frequency bands, as needed and as 

[5] Although the Executive Committee's action items stated that grants 
coordination requirements would be submitted for the President's 
proposed fiscal year 2011 budget, OEC officials stated that ECPC will 
not submit these requirements for the fiscal year 2011 budget. OEC 
officials said that some work for establishing these requirements has 
been done by DHS, but ECPC members have not had the opportunity to 
contribute to the effort. OEC officials said they anticipate grant 
coordination requirements to be submitted for future budgets. 

[6] This concept may encompass information beyond system 
infrastructure, such as applicable governance models, established 
standard operating procedures, and relevant coordination 

[7] NECP was issued in July 2008 and provides recommended actions with 
due dates to guide emergency response providers and relevant 
government officials in making measurable improvements in emergency 
communications capabilities. Several of these milestones are relevant 
to ECPC. 

[8] As stated in NECP, RECCWGs assess emergency communications 
capabilities within their respective regions, facilitate disaster 
preparedness through the promotion of multi-jurisdictional and 
multiagency emergency communications networks, and ensure activities 
are coordinated with all emergency communications stakeholders within 
the RECCWG's associated Federal Emergency Management Agency region. 

[9] [hyperlink,]. 

[10] [hyperlink,]. 

[11] [hyperlink,]. 

[End of section] 

GAO's Mission: 

The Government Accountability Office, the audit, evaluation and 
investigative arm of Congress, exists to support Congress in meeting 
its constitutional responsibilities and to help improve the performance 
and accountability of the federal government for the American people. 
GAO examines the use of public funds; evaluates federal programs and 
policies; and provides analyses, recommendations, and other assistance 
to help Congress make informed oversight, policy, and funding 
decisions. GAO's commitment to good government is reflected in its core 
values of accountability, integrity, and reliability. 

Obtaining Copies of GAO Reports and Testimony: 

The fastest and easiest way to obtain copies of GAO documents at no 
cost is through GAO's Web site [hyperlink,]. Each 
weekday, GAO posts newly released reports, testimony, and 
correspondence on its Web site. To have GAO e-mail you a list of newly 
posted products every afternoon, go to [hyperlink,] 
and select "E-mail Updates." 

Order by Phone: 

The price of each GAO publication reflects GAO’s actual cost of
production and distribution and depends on the number of pages in the
publication and whether the publication is printed in color or black and
white. Pricing and ordering information is posted on GAO’s Web site, 

Place orders by calling (202) 512-6000, toll free (866) 801-7077, or
TDD (202) 512-2537. 

Orders may be paid for using American Express, Discover Card,
MasterCard, Visa, check, or money order. Call for additional 

To Report Fraud, Waste, and Abuse in Federal Programs: 


Web site: [hyperlink,]: 
Automated answering system: (800) 424-5454 or (202) 512-7470: 

Congressional Relations: 

Ralph Dawn, Managing Director, 
(202) 512-4400: 
U.S. Government Accountability Office: 
441 G Street NW, Room 7125: 
Washington, D.C. 20548: 

Public Affairs: 

Chuck Young, Managing Director, 
(202) 512-4800: 
U.S. Government Accountability Office: 
441 G Street NW, Room 7149: 
Washington, D.C. 20548: