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Statement of
Commissioner Michael J. Copps

Re: Reorganization of the Enforcement Bureau and Establishment of Office of Homeland Security.

I will support this item in the hope and expectation that homeland security will have the high priority it deserves at the Commission. I have said repeatedly since September 11, 2001 that the Commission has no higher priority than our obligation to ensure the viability and security of the nation's communications infrastructure. The statute under which we exist makes this perfectly clear.

I frankly worry that, as we as a nation move further away from 9/11, we have a tendency to let our guard down, to go back to business-as-usual, to lose our sense of urgency. This Commission must never lose its focus in discharging our homeland security obligations. When terror strikes our shores again, I want this Commission to be able to demonstrate that it has done everything it could to preserve and enhance our communications security and that we served no higher priority.

Organizational and bureaucratic changes can help in this effort - or, they can hurt. They can help if the priority remains heightened and the leadership is aggressive. It can hurt if this effort becomes just one among many important priorities of the agency, if the Office of Homeland Security becomes just one division among several in one bureau, or if the effort becomes one office's job rather than every office's job. Today's decision by itself guarantees no outcome. I will be watching closely, and working wherever I can, to see that this decision does indeed enhance our effort and that homeland security remains a second-to-none priority at this agency.