I, Bill Walker, Governor of the State of Alaska, under the authority of Article III, Sections 1 and 24 of the Alaska Constitution, and in accordance with AS 44.19.145(c), establish the Alaska Statewide Interoperability Governing Board (SIGB)
In an emergency, whether a natural disaster or life-threatening event, federal and state public safety agencies must be able to communicate with persons affected and with first responders immediately, efficiently, and reliably. That communication capability must extend to all parts of the state. Currently, Alaska lacks a comprehensive and reliable system to allow public safety agencies to communicate together through a seamless, integrated system, i.e., communications interoperability. To address the complex issues of interoperability, the State must employ a coordinated and comprehensive approach that leverages resources and expertise found within government bodies and the first responder community.
The SIGB will review and provide recommendations to the Governor on related statewide and regional emergency communications interoperability efforts, and develop recommendations for public safety communications policy including broadband, land mobile radio, 9-1-1, alerts and warnings, and communications emerging technologies. The SIGB will provide recommendations on updating and implementing, consistent with applicable law, the Alaska Statewide Communication Interoperability Plan (SCIP). The work of the SIGB will be similar to, but not redundant of, the Alaska State Emergency Response Commission (AS 26.23.071).
Voting members will be appointed by, and serve at the pleasure of, the Governor. The SIGB will consist of 13 voting members as detailed below:
Six State of Alaska members:
- The Commissioner or Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety;
- A representative from the Department of Administration who serves as the Chief Information Officer for the State;
- The Commissioner or Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Military and Veterans’ Affairs;
- The Commissioner or Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities;
- The Commissioner or Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Health and Social Services;
- The Commissioner or Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Natural Resources, or the Division of Forestry Director;
Seven voting Board members, who are not state officials, who are appointed by, and serve at the pleasure of the Governor are identified as:
- One representative of the Alaska Municipal League or a similar organization that represents municipalities in the state;
- One representative from an Alaska Native community, as recommended by the Governor’s Tribal Advisory Council;
- One representative of the Alaska Fire Chiefs Association or a similar organization representing the interests of fire and emergency services program executives;
- One representative of the Alaska Association of Chiefs of Police or a similar organization representing the interests of law enforcement executives;
- One representative of the Alaska Chapter of the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials, the National Emergency Number Association, or a similar organization of public safety communications professionals;
- The Statewide Interoperability Coordinator;
- The Statewide 9-1-1 Coordinator.
The SIGB may bring in additional expertise from other entities, including, but not limited to:
- The Federal Emergency Management Agency;
- The United States Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Emergency Communications;
- The United States Alaskan Command;
- The United States Department of the Interior.
Duties and Responsibilities
The SIGB shall make recommendations to the Governor on issues relevant to statewide interoperability, including:
- Awareness of national trends and emerging technologies and issues in public safety communications.
- Coordination of 9-1-1, data and voice communications in a way that promotes a “systems of systems” approach, positions the State to take advantage of Next Generation 9-1-1 technologies, and the deployment of the National Public Safety Broadband Network in Alaska.
- Provide recommendations for policy, statutory, or regulatory changes that would increase coordination among State agencies, municipal governments, federal agencies, and non-governmental organizations to reduce duplication of efforts and increase interoperability.
- Provide recommendations for the State’s investment in communications technologies.
- Develop recommendations for interoperable communications policies and procedures.
- Provide recommendations for the expenditure of state or federal funds related to interoperable emergency communications.
- Increase participation in statewide interoperable communications training and exercise opportunities for Alaska’s public safety practitioners, consistent with available resources.
The SIGB will submit an annual report on interoperability progress, challenges, and its recommendations to the Governor by December 1.
The Alaska Statewide Interoperability Governance Board is assigned to the Department of Public Safety for administrative support.
Board members receive no compensation or other remuneration from the State as members of the Board. Members of the board who are not state or federal employees are entitled to per diem and travel expenses in the same manner permitted for members of state boards and commissions. Per diem and travel expenses for members of the board who are a representative of a state or federal agency are the responsibility of that agency.
A Chair and Vice Chair shall be selected by the Board from among its membership.
The Departments represented as voting members will provide staff technical assistance and expertise in the areas of interoperability coordination, statewide 9-1-1 communications, single points of contact administration, and general communications.
The SIGB may create advisory-only subcommittees. The SIGB may assign nonmembers to those subcommittees. Nonmembers are not entitled to per diem or travel expenses unless they are employed by a state or federal agency, and then are entitled to per diem and travel as authorized by their employer.
The SIGB will meet quarterly, at minimum. Additional meetings may be called by the Chair. The SIGB and its subcommittees will use teleconferencing and other electronic means, to the extent practicable, in order to gain the widest public participation at minimum cost.
At times and locations to be determined by the Chair, the SIGB may also convene public meetings to present information and receive comments.
The SIGB may prepare bylaws to ensure consistent and efficient board operations. A majority of the members of the Board constitutes a quorum for conducting business. Meetings of the SIGB and any subcommittees shall be conducted, and notice of meetings provided, in accordance with AS 44.62.310 and 44.62.319 (Open Meetings Act).
Records of the SIGB and all subcommittees are subject to inspection and copying as public records under AS 40.25.110 – 40.25.220.
This order does not affect the work of the Alaska State Emergency Response Commission (AS 26.23.071), although the Governor may provide the SIGB’s annual report to the Commission for its consideration.
This Order takes effect immediately.
Dated this 30th day of August, 2018.