Leaders in the District of Columbia today hailed the release of new assessments by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that recognize the National Capital Region (NCR), in and around Washington, DC, among a few areas that are leading the nation in interoperable communications capabilities.
DHS assessed interoperable communications capabilities in 75 Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) areas nationwide, using an exhaustive, peer-reviewed process. The assessments addressed three elements of interoperable communications—governance, standard operating procedures (SOPs), and usage.
Of the 75 areas evaluated by DHS, only the NCR and five others received the highest score of “Advanced Implementation” on all three dimensions of interoperable communications. The NCR encompasses 18 jurisdictions—the District of Columbia; the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church, Manassas, and Manassas Park, Virginia; the Virginia counties of Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, and Prince William; the cities of Bowie, College Park, Gaithersburg, Greenbelt, Rockville, and Takoma Park, Maryland; and the Maryland counties of Montgomery and Prince George's.
“We’re very pleased with this recognition from DHS,” said incoming District of Columbia Mayor Adrian Fenty. “It reflects years of collaboration among first responders and technology agencies throughout the region. Together, we’ve developed the advanced communications capability we need to safeguard all of our citizens, whatever the emergency.”
“The seamless interoperability among our first responders results from the strong strategic partnerships that the NCR jurisdictions have created,” said District of Columbia Interim Chief Technology Officer Robert LeGrande II. “We’ll continue working together to ensure that first responders throughout the region can communicate with each other quickly, effectively, and with state-of-the-art technology.”