PA 553, Fall 2009

Term Paper Topics

Nicholas Copare

Kristy Perry

Unity of command between federal and state militaries both provide Defense Support to Civil Authorities (DSCA) in the event of a disaster within the US. Federal and state laws (Title 10, Title 32, or State Active Duty) regulate missions that each entity is authorized to perform based on the status of the unit. Federal and state militaries have many similarities but also have different Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) often reporting to different agencies in the event of a disaster. This paper will examine the laws and policies, such as the Posse Comitatus Act, the Stafford Act, the Insurrection Act, National Defense Authorization Act of 2004, etc., that govern the status of each entity. We will also focus on the unity of command, and how the United States Northern Command (USNORTHCOM) is integrated into this process.
Rebecca and Richard D'Angelo; Patrick Lake Question:  What laws cover possible response actions of a local military base during an emergency / disaster .... but prior to the fully authorized Federal assistance (if any).  Or is there any partnership agreements in place?  Or is there nothing at all and current rules don't allow anyone or thing from the base to do anything until full Fed assistance has been requested and approved? (using Fort Bragg as the example)

Q: Is the Fort Bragg base response plan coordinated w/ local or regional agencies?

Q: What could Fort Bragg do to assist in most likely emergencies ... flood, hurricane, fire?  Does this capacity and the timeliness of it fill a gap?

Q: If laws/regs etc. prevent this capacity from being used in a timely manner (as in requiring normal fed approval) should an exception be made into laws?

Q: If there is local coordination -- is it effective and useful; has it been tested?  If no coordination, should there be and how could it help?

Leta Huntsinger My paper will investigate the role that Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) can play in disaster/emergency management.  The research will include an assessment of the long-range transportation plans (LRTP) for select MPOs across the country with respect to the safety and security planning factor required by the current transportation legislation SAFETEA-LU.  These findings will be used to assess performance, draw inferences, and make recommendations.
Christopher Jones I will be analyzing the capacity of local governments with respect to disaster housing. This will include a critical analysis of current practices and also policies presented in the National Disaster Housing Strategy. Specifically, I will look at federal, state, and other
resources available to localities with respect to transitioning disaster victims into permanent housing.
James Kribs My paper topic is a comparative study of the tactics and strategies used in urban fire settings compared to those of a wildfire, with a focus on long term response strategies and on mitigation, prevention, and response policies put in place, such as fuel removal and tiered responses. The intention is to discuss where each can learn from the others' strategies.
Gary Lazorick The recent Con Agra explosion overwhelmed Garner's response capabilities resulting in mutual aid and state assistance. Newspaper accounts and after action reports have judged the response as effective. Town officials attribute the effective response to training and equipment funding availability resulting from the homeland security emphasis since the 9/11 attacks. The paper will assess the effectiveness of the response, investigate the validity the government officials assertions, and use the findings to support/refute the assertion that all hazard disaster response has improved since 9/11 despite a emphasis on terror.
Tim Lipka I plan to write my paper on the changes made to US Civilian Nuclear Security and Incident Response policy after Three Mile Island (TMI). It will explore the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's response to TMI and the response framework before the incident, the response to the incident, and how the Commission changed its response framework after. The final part of my paper will focus on how effective the changes would be if something ever happened again.
Derrick Remer I am exploring disaster policy on college campuses, specifically those within the University of North Carolina system.  I intended to evaluate the current state of the emergency operations plans at various universities and see what affect the shootings at campuses around the country have had on the current plan.  I postulate that campuses with a dedicated emergency manager will have more of an all-hazard plan, while those schools that do not have a dedicated manager will have a plan more focused on an active shooter.
Dan Sargent I am formulating a critique of the regional preparedness effort currently being practiced by the department of Homeland Security. I plan to examine the development of the regional approach, and seek to identify limitations to its application. The critique will not focus on regional theory in general, but on the specific flavor of regionalism in current practice. Issue such as term confusion, conflict with the all-hazards preparedness model, and other concerns will be addressed.
Bess Tyner

The focus of my research paper will be on a key element of the Incident Command System, namely that of plain talk.  Plain talk is supposed to ease interagency communication, but my thesis is that not only is the ICS not well implemented by most agencies, but that plain talk is also either not utilized or not understood as an operational concept.  I intend to survey a cross section of agencies as well as research the literature.