Interoperable Communications Technology Program Grantee Workshops On-going

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The Denver workshop was a success despite an unexpected April blizzard. (Ed Andrieski / AP)
SEARCH is holding an interesting series of joint workshops this spring and early summer for the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and Homeland Security communications interoperability grantees. Under cooperative agreement with the DOJ Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), we have been planning advanced topic workshops for their Interoperable Communications Technology Program grantees. Our work with the DHS Office of State and Local Government Coordination and Preparedness (OSLGCP -formerly the Office for Domestic Preparedness) led to an opportunity to assist with a similar series of workshops for their grantees.

Workshop topics are designed to help 2003 and 2004 ICTP grant recipients manage their initiatives over the long-term, build interagency response capabilities, and make the most of technologies chosen to improve communications interoperability.

"Because many of the same agencies and people are involved with projects funded under both grant programs, it made a lot of sense to hold the workshops in conjunction with one another," said Dan Hawkins, SEARCH Public Safety Technologies Program Manager.

The first COPS workshop was held in Denver on April 11-12th, followed by the DHS one on April 13th. Denver was hit hard by a spring blizzard shortly beforehand that prevented many registered attendees from making it earlier in the week, but the house was full by the third day. Despite travel problems faced, the workshops were enthusiastically received.

The next two workshops are being held in Columbus, Ohio, June 1-3, and the final pair in Charlotte on July 12-14. Attendance is only open to participants in COPS ICTP and particular homeland security grant programs. All eligible grant recipients have been notified of the workshops.