Committee of Principals
The Committee of Principals (COP) is a Presidentially
designated interagency group that provides advice and recommendations
on national security and emergency preparedness telecommunications
to the Executive Office of the President.
The COP is composed of high-level Government officials
representing Federal operational, policy, regulatory, and enforcement
organizations. Its diverse representation across 24 Federal departments
and agencies embraces the full spectrum of Federal telecommunications
assets and responsibilities. As an interagency group, it serves
as a forum for members to review, evaluate, and present views and
recommendations on current or prospective NCS programs to the Manager,
NCS, the Executive Agent (the Secretary of Homeland Security), and
the Executive Office of the President (EOP).
The Manager of the National Communications System
chairs the Committee of Principals. Each member department and agency
of the NCS is responsible for providing a principal member to sit
on the Committee of Principals (COP) with the role of executing
the responsibilities originally assigned by Executive Order 12472,
"Assignment of National Security and Emergency Preparedness
(NS/EP) Telecommunications Functions."
The COP Principal is responsible for providing the
position of their parent organization on policy, technical, and
programmatic NS/EP telecommunications issues. Principals ensure
that written reports, comments, and recommendations are made available
to the Committee through the Executive Secretary (the NCS Deputy
Manager). Principals also participate as members of subordinate
groups, as required, and provide guidance and direction to their
respective organizations' representatives.
The COP meets bi-monthy. At these meetings, the COP
receives a series of briefings designated for action or information.
Often, the Committee is asked to recommend forwarding a report or
issuance to the Executive Office of the President. It is by the
COP's consensus and direction that the majority of the programs
and activities of the NCS take place. The COP Bylaws outline these
The Council of Representatives (COR) was formally
established by the Committee Bylaws as a permanent subordinate group
to participate in NCS activities. Each department and agency provides
a representative to the Council of Representatives (COR). The Office
of the Manager, NCS provides support to the COP, COR, and their
As the working group of the COP, the COR reviews initiatives
from many sources for forwarding to the Committee. For example,
the COP may be tasked by the Executive Office of the President or
the National Security Council to investigate a specific area and
produce recommendations for action. The Committee, in turn, may
task the COR to study that area and provide a report within a specific
period of time. The COR may convene a subcommittee to fulfill the
COP's request. As another example, the OMNCS may present or initiate
a new program for consideration by the COR and the COP. Alternatively,
an NCS member organization may present a briefing for NCS consideration.
As needed, the COR establishes technical and planning
subcommittees and implementation teams which support processes of
the COR. These subcommittees and teams play an important role in
the NCS and its deployment of NS/EP communications programs.
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