The National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) announced its 2017 federal advocacy priorities today. NASCIO’s federal advocacy agenda will focus on four issues:
1. State chief information officers’ (CIOs) seek strong intergovernmental partnership on cybersecurity
2. Flexibility in federal funding regulations that encourage legacy system modernization and cloud adoption
3. Information sharing and safeguards: meeting citizen expectations
4. FirstNet: successful implementation of state plans
Fact sheets and additional details on NASCIO’s 2017 federal advocacy priorities can be found at www.NASCIO.org/advocacy.
“NASCIO’s 2017 advocacy priorities reflect the ways in which state CIOs hope to work collaboratively with the federal government. Chief among these priorities is cybersecurity. Protecting public networks and reducing the risk to the digital assets of citizens and government is a shared mission across all levels of government and it is our hope that our federal partners will work with state CIOs to achieve a more secure cybersecurity posture,” said NASCIO President and Connecticut CIO Mark Raymond.
NASCIO’s 2016 Cybersecurity Study data indicates that the biggest challenge to cybersecurity as reported by state chief information security officers (CISOs) is insufficient budgets; this has been the number one challenge since the inception of the NASCIO Cybersecurity Study in 2010. In addition to the lack of funding, state CISOs report that compliance with voluminous federal security regulations redirects scare state resources to compliance activity instead of those that would more effectively ensure the security of state government networks and digital assets.
Given the resource-constrained environment in which state governments operate, NASCIO hopes to work collaboratively with the federal government to introduce flexibility in federal funding regulations that will encourage legacy system modernization and cloud adoption within state governments. Currently, federal funding regulations are promulgated in a “silo” fashion that does not incentivize enterprise solutions.
Scarce resources have also led to increased collaboration between various levels of government including state-to-state and state-to-local. This kind of cross-jurisdictional collaboration highlights the need for effective, efficient, and consistent information sharing and in 2017, NASCIO will work with the federal government to stimulate and incentivize the adoption of the National Information Exchange Model (NIEM).
FirstNet appears again as an advocacy priority in 2017 because this year, governors will be making the decision to opt-in or opt-out of the Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network. Many state CIOs serve as FirstNet’s Single Point of Contact (SPOC) for the state and all state CIOs serve as a trusted technology and business advisor to their governors. Thus, it is important that FirstNet communicate regularly with states as final state plans are delivered and acted upon.
The association’s federal advocacy priorities for the year are selected by its Executive Committee based on the intersection of the leading policy priorities of state CIOs (available at www.NASCIO.org/topten) and key opportunities to work with Congress and the Executive Branch.