State, Local, Tribal and Private Sector Policy Advisory Committee meets on Classified Information Sharing with Tribes and Others

On January 11, 2011, the State, Local, Tribal, and Private Sector Policy (SLTPS) Advisory Committee (the Committee) convened for its inaugural meeting to discuss implementation of Executive Order 13549 (attached) regarding the sharing of classified information among state, local, and tribal governments and the private sector. The Executive Order did two main things: 1) created the Classified National Security Information Program to safeguard and govern access to classified national security information shared by the federal government with SLTPS entities, and 2) created the Committee to discuss Program-related policy issues in dispute and recommend ways to remove undue impediments to sharing information.

The Committee is chaired by the Director of the Information Security Oversight Office; the State, Local, Tribal and Private Sector each have a representative on the Committee. The Tribal representative is Gary Ledford who is also the Director of Public Safety for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Federal Committee members include representatives from the Departments of State, Defense, Justice, Transportation and Energy, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the Central Intelligence Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The Vice-Chairmanship is split between a designee from the Department of Homeland Security and a designee chosen from among the SLTPS representatives.

The definition of State, Local, and Tribal personnel is quite broad, meaning any of the following: governors, mayors, tribal leaders and other elected officials as well as law enforcement personnel, fire fighters, public health, radiological health and medical professionals, and emergency management personnel associated with a state, local or tribal government. “Tribe” means any Indian or Alaska Native tribe, band, nation, pueblo, village, or community that the Secretary of the Interior acknowledges to exist as an Indian tribe as defined in the Federally Recognized Tribe List Act of 1994 (25 U.S.C. § 479a(2)). Clearances granted to SLTPS personnel and facilities will be accepted reciprocally by all agencies and other SLTPS entities.

The level of access granted is up to and including the “Secret” level, but leeway is given to agencies to decide on a case-by-case basis to allow access to information classified as Top Secret, Special Access Program, and Sensitive Compartmentalized Information.
The Committee’s next step will be to approve a more detailed “Implementing Directive.” The Committee members will work with the named agencies to incorporate their concerns into a final version of the Directive to be submitted to Secretary of Homeland Security Napolitano by February 14, 2011. The next Committee meetings are scheduled for July 27, 2011 and January 18, 2012. Questions or comments may be sent to .

We also attach comments submitted to the Committee by the Criminal Intelligence Coordinating Council (CICC) regarding the implementation of the Executive Order and further suggestions as to the best way to standardize and streamline the process of sharing classified information. The CICC is made up of members representing law enforcement and homeland security agencies and organizations. It is charged with developing recommendations to federal agencies concerning criminal intelligence issues that affect state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies.

Please let us know if we may provide additional information regarding the work of the State, Local, Tribal, and Private Sector Policy Advisory Committee.