Response and Recovery Performance Metrics: We agree that EP&R systems
are not entirely owned by the CIO's office and recognize that the program
offices, which are the systems users, also need to help identify effective
performance measures. The EP&R CIO's comments affirm the need for
improved ability to collect performance data from IT systems.
Recommendation 1 of our report addresses the need for improved
Departmentwide Initiatives: The additional information that the EP&R CIO
provided on FEMA's efforts to coordinate its IT activities with
departmentwide initiatives affirms issues and recommendations we raise in
our report. Where appropriate, we have revised the report to reflect the
ongoing coordination activities.
IT Guidance and Training: Again, the EP&R CIO's comments affirm and
supplement the information we provided on IT guidance and training in our
report. Like the EP&R CIO, we expect that having regional IT staff report
directly to his office will enhance efforts to define training requirements,
integrate and improve training materials, and better communicate guidance
and training availability.
Database Integration: The EP&R CIO commented that our discussion under
the report heading Databases Are Not Fully Integrated should be omitted
because it is not relevant to either database integration or mission application
integration. In response, we have revised the heading and clarified the
subsequent discussion concerning the need to centralize NEMIS servers.
Logistics Integration: The EP&R CIO stated that our example regarding
logistics coordination is partially incorrect in that not all of the tractor trailers
came from the FEMA Logistics Centers. Our report does not say that all of
the trucks came from the FEMA logistics center. Indeed, where the trucks
came from is not germane to the issue that we raise. Rather, we are concerned
that, although FEMA is responsible for coordinating federal incident response,
the arrival of all of the trucks at a single staging area was uncoordinated and
personnel were not on hand to receive the supplies in a timely manner.
NEMIS Access and Security: We recognize that cyber security requirements
limit the ability of state employees to access NEMIS from their desktops and
have revised our report accordingly.
System Capacity to Handle Increased Workload: We disagree with the EP&R
CIO's comments regarding the ability of FEMA's IT systems to handle
Emergency Preparedness and Response Could Better Integrate Information Technology
with Incident Response and Recovery