Gov. Nathan Deal has announced creation of the Local Government 9-1-1 Authority, which will be housed under the Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency (GEMA/HS), on July 1. Deal will introduce legislation codifying the Authority during the 2018 legislative session.
“For some time now, state and local officials have been exploring solutions to modernize our 9-1-1 system and improve our communications network,” said Deal. “This past session, legislation creating a semi-autonomous body to oversee 9-1-1 operations, fee collections and disbursements came to my desk. While SB 222 attempted to address several current challenges, many of which I’ve incorporated into this executive order, it presented me with other concerns.
“As I explained in my veto statement, the lack of state oversight and coordination could hamper joint emergency response efforts, and the authority would also go unfunded for two years. However, I also recognized the need for better statewide service and announced my intention to create a Local Government 9-1-1 Authority that would be housed at and funded through GEMA/HS. I’m grateful for the input and recommendations provided by local emergency response workers and officials, legislators and other stakeholders and look forward to working with the Authority moving forward.”
The Local Government 9-1-1 Authority Advisory Board is comprised of state agency heads, local elected officials and representatives from the public safety and law enforcement communities, as recommended by SB 222. Its members include:
- Colonel Mark McDonough, Commissioner, Department of Public Safety
- Lynne Riley, Commissioner, Department of Revenue
- Cheryl Greathouse, Instructional Services Division Director, Georgia Public Safety Training Center
- Greg Whitaker, Director, Douglas County E-911
- William Wright, Manager, Barrow County E-911
- Ted Wynn, Public Safety and Emergency Management Director, Bulloch County
- Charlotte Nash, Chairman, Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners
- Peter Olson, County Manager, Bartow County
- Eddie DeLoach, Mayor, City of Savannah
- John McDonough, City Manager, City of Sandy Springs
- Michael Wall, Vice President of Government & Regulatory Affairs, Comcast
- Kevin Curtin, Assistant Vice President of Legislative Affairs, AT&T
- Billy Hancock, Sheriff, Crisp County
- Billy Grogan, Police Chief, City of Dunwoody
- Joel Baker, Fire Chief, City of Atlanta
The role of director was also a recommendation of SB 222, and GEMA/HS Director Homer Bryson appointed Michael Nix to fill this role.
Michael Nix, Director, Local Government 9-1-1 Authority
Nix is the local government liaison and deputy director of executive appointments in the governor’s office. He works closely with local government officials, agencies and other organizations to ensure local issues are addressed and coordinate effective responses to their needs. During natural disasters or in a state of emergency, Nix serves as GEMA/HS liaison supporting External Affairs efforts, including coordinating with local officials and media outlets to provide the public with timely and accurate lifesaving information. He sits on the Youth Activities Commission for the City of Newnan and is a volunteer with the Coweta Community Foundation. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Public Policy from Georgia State University. Nix is a member of Macedonia Baptist Church and resides in Newnan.