WHEREAS, the State of Missouri recognizes the critical importance of interoperable communications in the public safety community to the people of Missouri; and
WHEREAS, communications interoperability and positive interaction between public safety entities are a critical element to the day to day safety of first responders throughout Missouri, as they provide a safe environment to the benefit of Missouri's citizens; and
WHEREAS, Missouri's statewide public safety voice and data communications infrastructure need to be upgraded to promote efficient use of technological advances; and
WHEREAS, Missouri has pursued progress on the issue of interoperable communications by the establishment of the State Interoperable Executive Committee; and
WHEREAS, Missouri's 700 MHz Regional Planning Committee is recognized nationally and leading all states in preparing the plans necessary for Missouri public safety to benefit from the recently allocated 700 MHz public safety spectrum; and
WHEREAS, Missouri has been active in planning national strategy for 700 MHz development by participating in a working group under the Interoperability Subcommittee of the Federal Communication Commission's National Coordination Committee; and
WHEREAS, Missouri has participated on the National Task Force on Interoperability, a task force designed to identify interoperable communications needs across the country.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BOB HOLDEN, GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF MISSOURI, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the constitution and the laws of the State of Missouri, do hereby order that the Missouri State Highway Patrol within the Department of Public Safety be designated the lead agency in State communications. The Highway Patrol's Communications Division shall serve to coordinate and implement communications technology initiatives for the State, particularly with respect to interoperable communication initiatives among state, local, federal, and public service entities; and
The Highway Patrol shall have authority and responsibility to establish state-wide policies with respect to communications technology that will contribute to the interoperability environment within the State of Missouri; and
The Highway Patrol shall annually produce a Communications Strategic Plan to serve as a guide for establishing and maintaining interoperable communications among public safety and public service entities; and
The Highway Patrol shall annually prepare a report, The State of Public Safety Communications in Missouri,and submit the report by December 1 of each year to the Governor, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and the Senate and House Appropriation Chairs for consideration in the State's budget process; and
This order shall not be construed to alter the existing authorities of any executive agency or department, except that all executive departments and agencies are directed to assist the Highway Patrol in carrying out the purposes of this order.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of the State of Missouri, in the City of Jefferson on this 10th day of December, 2003.
[Bob Holden's signature]
[Matt Blunt's signature]
Secretary of State