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Operational Components

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The EMAC governance structure includes Operational Components that ensure coordination, efficient control, action, and coordination when EMAC is activated. These components, each with its own function within EMAC, are NEMA; a National Coordinating State (NCS); EMAC Advance Team (A-Team); National EMAC Liaison Team (NELT); and Regional EMAC Liaison Team (RELT).

Within the operational components, NEMA’s administrative role is much the same as it is while administering the Compact.  NEMA is responsible for ensuring all functions of the operation are working to the best of their ability, to resolve issues in cooperation with the NCS, to maintain the EMAC Operations System, and to ensure data integrity.

The NCS is the initial point of contact for EMAC operational activities.  The NCS monitors potential and actual emergency events nationwide and is prepared to support states with EMAC needs on short notice by swiftly coordinating with Authorized Representatives and Designated Contacts. The NCS recruits other operational coordination components (A-Teams, NELTs, and RELTs) for deployment and interfaces with the EMAC Program Director during an event. The NCS serves the operations coordination function as it oversees all EMAC response and recovery operations and ensures that operational procedures are followed, that coordinating teams are adequately staffed, and that timely deployment status reports are issued. The NCS also coordinates with Executive Task Force members, the EMAC Committee Chair, and NEMA staff to resolve policy and procedural issues during the activation and implementation of EMAC functions.

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The Chair of the Executive Task Force serves in a dual role as the National Coordinating State's Leader and the Chair of the EMAC Executive Task Force.   The National Coordinating State is composed of emergency management personnel from the home state of the NCS Leader/EMAC Executive Task Force Chair. Because the chair of the Executive Task Force changes annually, the members of the NCS also change each year.

EMAC requires that each state prepare and make available a cadre of four or more individuals, called an A-Team, who understand and are prepared to implement EMAC procedures within their own state or be deployed in that role should another state need such assistance. When an emergency-impacted state does not have sufficient personnel of its own in place to serve as a liaison and facilitate assistance, it may request one or more A-Teams from other states through the NCS.

A-Teams include personnel from multiple disciplines that are resource typed according to team composition. The A-Team is located at the Requesting State’s Emergency Operations Center and serves a resource coordination function in EMAC’s governance structure, preparing and transmitting Requests for Assistance and other documents, monitoring the status of all deployed personnel and other resources in the affected state, and providing logistical and technical support to those personnel when necessary.

When a disaster has the potential for widespread impact or catastrophic results, FEMA may activate the National Response Coordination Center, or NRCC, in Washington, D.C., for federal response and recovery operations. When this occurs, FEMA may also request an EMAC coordination element from the National Coordinating State.

With the approval of the National Coordinating State's Leader and concurrence from NEMA, a National EMAC Liaison Team, or NELT, will deploy to the NRCC. While at the NRCC, the NELT serves as a liaison to keep the federal government aware of state EMAC operational activity. The NELT—which includes both emergency management and National Guard Bureau personnel—interfaces with the NCS, A-Teams, NEMA, and any RELT(s). The NELT may not actively request resources from other states.

During a major, multistate emergency or disaster, FEMA may also activate a Regional Response Coordination Center to coordinate regional response and recovery operations. To support these efforts, FEMA may request a Regional EMAC Liaison Team, or RELT. This team serves a similar function as the NELT but in a regional, rather than national, setting. Like the NELT, the RELT serves as a liaison, and its composition depends on mission’s requirements.