The Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) is a Washington-based think tank that was established in 2007 by former Senate Majority leaders Howard Baker, Tom Daschle, Bob Dole and George Mitchell. The NSPG is a group that was established by the BPC to monitor the implementation of the 9/11 Commission's recommendations for bolstering national security in the aftermath of the terrorists attacks.
Last week's report offers an assessment of the progress that the government has made in implementing the commission's recommendations. According to the NSPG the government has made significant progress in addressing many of the 9/11 Commission's 41 recommendations.
However, several crucial ones remain very much a work in progress, the report noted.
One area where little progress has been made, has to do with the recommendation to increase the availability of radio spectrum for public safety purposes, the report noted.
"Incompatible and inadequate communications led to needless loss of life," on 9/11 the BPC said in its report. But plans to address the issue by setting aside more radio spectrum for first responders have "languished" because of a political fight over whether to allocate 10MHz of radio spectrum to first responders or to a commercial wireless bidder.
Another area where progress has been limited has been on the civil rights and privacy fronts, the report noted. Surveillance activities and the use of tools such as National Security Letters to search for terrorists has greatly expanded since the 9/11 attacks. But a recommendation for setting up a Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board with the Executive Branch has yet to be fully implemented.
"If we were issuing grades, the implementation of this recommendation would receive a failing mark," the NSPG said.
Jaikumar Vijayan covers data security and privacy issues, financial services security and e-voting for Computerworld. Follow Jaikumar on Twitter at @jaivijayan or subscribe to Jaikumar's RSS feed . His e-mail address is email@example.com .
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