Thursday, February 9, 2012

Region 6 Fusion Center Debuts

Collier County Sheriff Kevin Rambosk, chairman of the governance board for the Region 6 Fusion Center, announced Thursday that the center is now fully operational.

The purpose of the center is to collect information from all participating disciplines and “fuse” that information into actionable intelligence. The center proactively seeks to identify threats posed by terrorist or criminal enterprises and stop them before they occur.

The center is part of the Florida domestic security strategy that requires the state to create a multidisciplinary information-sharing platform. It serves 10 Southwest Florida counties and is part of the Florida Fusion Center Network, which covers the entire state.

The center is an environment for exchanging information relating to all crimes and all hazards. The following disciplines are members of the center: fire, health, emergency management and law enforcement. This process relies on active involvement of state, local, tribal, and federal agencies and sometimes non-law enforcement agencies. The main products of the center are situational awareness reports, threat assessments, intelligence assessments, and information bulletins.

The center serves Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte, Lee, Highlands, Glades, Hendry, Okeechobee, Desoto, and Collier counties. The following agencies are members: Manatee County Sheriff’s Office, Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office, Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office, Lee County Sheriff’s Office, Collier County Sheriff’s Office, Highlands County Sheriff’s Office, Bradenton Police Department, Sarasota Police Department, Cape Coral Police Department, Fort Myers Police Department, Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Federal Bureau of Investigation , Transportation Security Administration, Florida Department of Health, Lee County Emergency Management, Fort Myers Fire Department, and Estero Fire Department.

The center is staffed by three full-time and two part-time personnel. The center has also created a Fusion Liaison Program that has trained 40 liaisons representing the four disciplines to work in the field and provide information that can be analyzed and integrated into a final product.