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PO Box 46258
Washington, DC 20050-6258

For Immediate Release
September 5, 1997
Contact: Carla Sims
(703) 696-9395



WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Former Senator Sam Nunn and former Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick chaired the first official meeting of the Advisory Committee to the President's Commission on Critical Infrastructure Protection (PCCIP) today to review the Commission's preliminary findings and policy proposals. During the past year the Commission has met with public and industry leaders from across the country to research physical and cyber threats to infrastructures considered so vital that their incapacity or destruction would have a debilitating impact upon the defense or economic security of the United States. These infrastructures include: telecommunications, electric power, banking and finance, transportation, water supply, gas and oil, emergency services, and continuity of government services.

The Commission, created by Executive Order 13010, outlined five areas of focus for its October report to President Clinton. These include:

  1. Promote partnership between the public and private sectors to protect American's vital life-support systems;

  2. Improve federal government coordination of efforts to assure vital infrastructures;

  3. Improve assistance to state and local governments for infrastructure protection;

  4. Empower and encourage private initiatives;

  5. Create public education and awareness programs.

"Not only our nation's security but also our nation's economy depend on our critical infrastructures," said Senator Nunn. "And most of these infrastructures are owned by private enterprise. That is the strength of our system. But we also have to recognize it gives us an unprecedented challenge. Industry and government will have to cooperate to ensure the reliability of the systems to maintain not only the security of our country but also the everyday functions of our economy."

Ms. Gorelick emphasized the responsibilities of the Advisory Committee -- made up of senior executives in some of the companies that own and operate most of the critical infrastructures. "I believe that those of us serving on the Advisory Committee have an awesome responsibility. We are the channel to the private sector and we must take an active role in voicing the Commission's recommendations. We must be the first to travel the two-way street of communication between the private and public sectors," she commented.

During their year-long research effort, the Commission met with more than 5,500 individuals, corporations, associations, academic, military institutions and government agencies. They held public meetings in Los Angeles, Atlanta, Houston, Boston, and St. Louis receiving input from experts in science, technology, construction, computers, energy and transportation.

"We endeavored to leave no stone unturned as we identified dependencies, threats, and impediments to solutions," said PCCIP Chairman Robert T. Marsh, former chairman of the board of Thiokol corporation and a retired four-star Air Force general. "As we embark on this last phase of finalizing our recommendations, we welcome this opportunity to report on our progress and receive input from the Advisory Committee."

Presentations were given today by Commissioners Stevan Mitchell, Dept. of Justice; John Davis, National Security Agency; Peter Daly, U.S. Treasury; Nancy Wong, Pacific Gas & Electric Company; Tom Falvey, Dept. of Transportation; and Irv Pikus, Dept. of Commerce.

In addition to Senator Nunn and Ms. Gorelick, members of the Advisory Committee include: Charles Lee, Chairman and CEO, GTE Corporation; Erle Nye, Chairman and CEO, Texas Utilities Company; David Campbell, President and CEO, BBN Systems; Floyd Wicks, President, Southern California Water Company; Margaret Greene, VP and General Counsel, BellSouth Corporation; Maurice Greenberg, Chairman and CEO, American International Group; and Elvin Moon, President, E.W. Moon Engineering & Construction.

For more information on the President's Commission on Critical Infrastructure Protection,
please visit its Web site at <http://www.pccip.gov/>.

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