As communications interoperability continues to be a priority at the local, state, tribal and federal levels, the ability to share knowledge and better practices is a critical success factor in the planning and implementation of statewide interoperability initiatives. Communications interoperability is the ability of public safety agencies to talk across disciplines and jurisdictions via radio communications systems, exchanging voice and/or data with one another on demand, in real time, when needed and as authorized. The Commonwealth of Virginia and SAFECOM, a federal program managed by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), have entered into a partnership premised upon applying SAFECOM principles to an effort to plan and implement statewide communications interoperability. Both parties are committed to an approach, which captures the lessons learned that arise throughout their partnership. Those lessons learned can serve as a sample model to others designing and implementing a communications interoperability plan. Often the best place to start an effort as complex as this one is to collect insights and practices of other states and localities that have cleared their own path toward interoperability. This report profiles eighteen different states? planning efforts. The research highlights states and localities experiences with collaboration and participation across stakeholder groups. The purpose of this report is to provide examples of individual planning efforts complemented by a brief analysis of how some of these efforts have been successful and fit within SAFECOM principles.
Interoperability in Virginia: http://www.interoperability.publicsafety.virginia.gov/