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New York State Awarded Public Safety Interoperability Grant

November 19, 2008 By

Photo: New York State Governor David A. Paterson

The New York State Chief Information Officer and Office for Technology (CIO/OFT) today announced that New York State has been selected to participate in the National Governor's Association (NGA) Center for Best practices' Interoperability: Focus on Governance Policy Academy and receive a $50,000 grant. New York State's selection in the Academy was a result of Governor David A. Paterson's application to NGA to establish a formalized governance structure to guide New York State's interoperable communications efforts.

The NGA Center for Best Practices selected six states to participate in the Interoperability: Focus on Governance Policy Academy based on their commitment to addressing the complex challenges of advancing interoperability. Through the Academy, NGA experts will work an executive team from New York to provide expertise, information and resources needed to help advance statewide interoperability.

"We are very grateful the NGA Center for Best practices has selected New York State as a participant in the Interoperability: Focus on Governance Policy Academy and recipient of a $50,000 grant," said Paterson. "New York State recognizes the need and benefits of a refined governance policy regarding interoperability. The resources NGA is providing will enable us to strengthen our governance structure to sustain our statewide interoperable communications plan."

The goal of the Academy is to help state and local policymakers improve state interoperability governance structures that oversee statewide communications interoperability planning and implementation. New York officials will participate in an intensive nine-month process that includes policy academy meetings, in-state site visits, and customized technical assistance. In addition to working within their own teams, states will have the opportunity to collaborate with peers from other states and a faculty of government officials, researchers and other experts. The first Policy Academy meeting will be held in January 2009.

"The benefits of developing a successful interoperability public safety plan are self evident, but barriers to practical implementation remain," said Dr. Melodie Mayberry-Stewart, New York State CIO and the director of the Office For Technology "This program will help New York State develop a formalized governance structure to guide its interoperable communications efforts. This will help us unify the planning efforts of local, state and federal agencies for achieving statewide interoperability."

Participation in the NGA Center for Best practices' Interoperability: Focus on Governance Policy Academy and the $50,000 grant provide a necessary step forward to building a mature governance structure to sustain New York's statewide interoperable communications plan and program. The state plans to use the grant money to host the inaugural New York State Interoperability Symposium in the summer of 2009 to advance New York State along the SAFECOME Governance Continuum and to create statewide best practices, policies and protocols for communication interoperability.

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