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Obama Outlines Emergency Communications Authority

President Obama on Friday issued an executive order outlining which agencies and officials have authority over government emergency communications systems.

"The federal government must have the ability to communicate at all times and under all circumstances to carry out its most critical and time sensitive missions," Obama wrote in the order. "Such communications must be possible under all circumstances to ensure national security, effectively manage emergencies, and improve national resilience."

Officials at all levels of government must be involved in developing emergency communications policies and systems, the order stated.

Among the authorities outlined in the order are directions for the Office of Science and Technology Policy to oversee research and development and advise the president on spectrum issues and mandates that the Defense, Homeland Security, and other departments oversee emergency communications issues within their jurisdictions.

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