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                        STATEMENT OF

Re:  Review of the Emergency Alert System

     For over a half century, the United States has had in 
place a national warning system utilizing, in part, our 
Nation's broadcast outlets.  From the CONELRAD, established 
in 1951 by President Truman during the Korean War to its 
replacement, the Emergency Broadcast System, established in 
1963 by President Kennedy to the modern day Emergency Alert 
System (EAS), our government has sought to employ our 
country's media outlets as a mechanism for warning the 
American public of an emergency.

     A lot has changed since 1951.  As the primary role of 
EAS remains a national public warning system, increasingly 
state and local jurisdictions have used its capabilities to 
notify their citizens of local emergencies, including 
natural weather disasters and in saving the lives of many 
abducted children through the Amber Alert.  In addition, EAS 
has grown from its predecessor's birth on AM radio to FM 
radio, broadcast television and wireline and wireless cable 
systems.  Of course, the threats to our homeland have also 
changed dramatically over the last fifty years.  As the 
world around us has changed, however, the import of the EAS 
as a tool for reaching our citizenry during time of need 
remains high.

     We are proud to adopt this Notice today, as a result, 
in part, of the recommendations of the Media Security and 
Reliability Council and the Partnership for Public Warning 
and in coordination with our partners at the Department of 
Homeland Security and its component, FEMA and the Department 
of Commerce and its component, the National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration's National Weather Service.  

     This proceeding will provide one of many vehicles by 
which we collectively explore the most effective mechanism 
for warning the American public of an emergency and the role 
of EAS as we move further into our digital future.  I 
commend my colleagues here at the Commission and our 
partners at DHS, FEMA, DoC and NOAA for their dedication to 
making our homeland a safer place for our citizens.