Information Paper


HLS 404: Homeland Security and Defense in Practice
Lesson 2 – Non-Codified Authorities Shaping Homeland Security Initiatives
Student Learning Tasks | Graded Assignment
Type Correspondence: Information Paper
Audience: Incoming Secretary
Above all, remember this critical point: government officials will rarely (if ever) have either the time or
the inclination to read a study-like paper that reflects your seasoned, learned expertise and knowledge of
these documents. Instead, they will look to you to deliver succinctness and clarity from the hundreds
of pages of pertinent documents. If you can do that, you’ll be more useful than a roomful of scholars!
Your measure of success when writing for elected officials is how close you come to producing a Cliff’s
Notes-like document that captures the essence of the issues under discussion.
Title: “The Non-Codified Authorities Shaping Post-9/11 Homeland Security
You are an Administrative Officer in the state Department of Homeland Security. The newly-appointed,
the incoming secretary has requested an Information Paper highlighting the various
non-codified (non-statutory) authorities shaping current Homeland Security-related initiatives.
After discussing the secretary’s intent with the Deputy Secretary, you understand that you must
address these main authorities:
• PPD-1
• PPD-8
• PPD-21
• Homeland Security-related EO (your choice & perspective – but be sure to cover EO 13354)
• The National Security Strategy, May 2010
• The National Strategy for Homeland Security, October 2007
Specified Tasks:
In order to complete this assignment, you must successfully demonstrate an understanding of
the major PPD, EO and national strategies (NSS & NSHS) forming the non-legal basis for
implementing today’s Homeland Security initiatives. These documents should form the main
topics of your Information Paper.


Information PaperThe Non-Codified Authorities Shaping Post-9/11 Homeland Security Measures

Purpose. To provide information on the noncodified authorities shaping post 9/11 Homeland Security Measures.


Background. Following the 9/11 terrorist attacks on US soil, various concerted efforts have been put in place aimed at strengthening Homeland Security initiatives. The nation has seen increased direct presidential action as well as other authorities which have resulted in the transformation of the U.S. crisis management policy system. National security is no longer a preserve of the Homeland Security Department but rather, a shared responsibility by all agencies, community organizations, and individuals within the nation. Amongst the non-codified authorities that shape post 9/11 homeland security measures include, but are not limited to:

  • Presidential Policy Directive-1
  • Presidential Policy Directive-21
  • Presidential Policy Directive-8
  • Homeland Security-related Executive Orders (such as the EO 13354)
  • The National Security Strategy, 2010
  • The National Strategy for Homeland Security, 2007.

Presidential Policy Directive-1 (PPD-1).  This was the first presidential policy directive issued out in February 2009, and was geared towards communicating presidential decisions about national security policies. This directive stipulates the reorganization of the National Security Council system to comprise of the following councils:

  • [Key highlight #1] establishes the National Security Council (NSC) mandated to consider national security policy issues that require presidential determination. The NSC’s functions, responsibilities, and membership are set forth in the National Security Act of 1947 and its subsequent amendments and the PPD-1.  
  • [Key highlight #2] creates the NSC Principals Committee (NSC/PC) – a senior forum bringing together different agencies, chaired by the National Security Advisor, which considers policy issues affecting national security.
  • [Key highlight #3] establishes the NSC Deputies Committee (NSC/DC) – mandated to monitor and review the NSC’s work, interagency process, handle day-to-day crisis management and oversee the NSC’s policy implementation. The NSC/DC reports to the NSC
  • [Key highlight #4] creates the Interagency Policy Committees (NSC/IPCs). Mandated to manage the process of developing and implementing security policies by federal government agencies.


Presidential Policy Directive-8 (PPD-8). This presidential directive links a range of national efforts geared towards improving national preparedness (Federal Emergency Management Agency, 2013). The policy aims at strengthening the resilience and security of the US by empowering the whole community in systematic preparation for threats that may face the nation. Among the key tenets enshrined in this directive are:

  • [Key highlight #1] The directive outlines the national preparedness goal of a secure and resilient nation. It emphasizes a whole community approach towards prevention, protection against, mitigation, response, and recovery from threats and hazards that may face the nation. It also describes 31 core capabilities that will be put in place when addressing the nation’s risks and threats.
  • Key highlight #2] The directive stipulates the National Preparedness System that outlines a structured process through which American citizens can work together towards achieving the National Preparedness Goal.

Presidential Policy Directive-21 (PPD-21). This executive policy directive on critical infrastructure and resilience aimed at advancing national unity in strengthening and maintaining functioning, secure and resilient critical infrastructure. Among the key tenets outlined in the directive include:

  • [Key highlight #1] It clarifies and refines the critical infrastructure-related roles, responsibilities, and functions of the Federal government while enhancing overall collaboration and coordination.
  • [Key highlight #2] It outlines the specific roles to be performed by the Secretary of Homeland Security, sector-specific agencies and additional federal responsibilities in ensuring critical infrastructural security.

Executive Order 13354. This is a 2004 presidential order established to protect national security through strengthened intelligence analysis as well as strategic planning and intelligence support to respond to global terror threats. Amongst the key issues addressed by the order include:

  • [Key highlight #1] creates the National Counterterrorism Center mandated to analyze and integrate all US intelligence, serves as the country’s central knowledge bank on suspected and known terrorists, conducts continued strategic operational planning for various counterterrorism measures, and assigns diverse operational responsibilities for all counterterrorism lead agencies.

 The National Security Strategy, May 2010.

Among the key tenets projected by the strategy include:

  •  [Key highlight #1] seeks to advance National Interests namely strengthening national security, fighting terror, securing cyberspace and reversing the acquisition and spread of biological and nuclear weapons.
  • [Key highlight #2] seeks to advance American Values by stipulating the need and ways for the US to promote democracy, human rights, and dignity across the world.
  • [Key highlight #3] aims at promoting a just and sustainable international order by building cooperation with current international system dominant players; ensuring strong alliances and sustaining broad cooperation on key global challenges as well as strengthening mechanisms and institutions for cooperation.

The National Strategy for Homeland Security, October 2007. Thisnationalplan stipulates a common framework aimed at guiding, organizing and unifying homeland security efforts. It stipulates that security is undoubtedly a shared responsibility that is founded on partnerships. The strategy posits four main goals as follows:

  • [Key highlight #1] aims at preventing and disrupting terror attacks.
  • [Key highlight #2] gears towards protecting American people, key resources and critical infrastructure.
  • [Key highlight #3] aimed at responding to and recovering from incidents that may arise
  •  [Key highlight #4] aimed at establishing and transforming homeland security systems, principles, institutions and structures.

additional information:

Federal Emergency Management Agency. (2013). PPD-8 Overview Presentation.    

Federal Register. (2004). Executive Order 13354. Web.

National Strategy for Homeland Security, 2007.

Homeland Security Council. (2007).

White House. (2009). Presidential Policy Directive 1.

White House. (2013). Presidential Policy Directive 21.

White House. (2010). National Security Strategy, 2010.


Federal Emergency Management Agency. (2013). PPD-8 Overview Presentation.              

Federal Register. (2004). Executive Order 13354. Web

Homeland Security Council. (2007).National Strategy for Homeland Security, 2007

White House. (2009). Presidential Policy Directive 1

White House. (2010). National Security Strategy, 2010.

White House. (2013). Presidential Policy Directive 21

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