Participation in the AUXCOMM program for a registered individual is as a Technical Specialist (THSP) and can be assigned to communication related tasks as supported by their training and experience. The FEMA online courses, IS 100, IS 200, IS 700, and IS 800 are a requirement of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Federal Emergency Management agency (FEMA) for an understanding of the Incident Command System (ICS).

Registered ACS individuals may participate in any AUXCOMM activity that is not under an emergency EOC Activation or AUXCOMM Mobilization order. Examples where registered individuals may participate are meetings, exercises, and training sessions.

Only those individuals that have successfully completed the minimum ICS training (IS 100, IS 700), with certificates on file, and have completed, or have been granted credit for, the appropriate introductory course work may participate in events and incidents under an EOC Activation or AUXCOMM Mobilization Order.

The AUXCOMM model is an inclusive program for the utilization of any communication related asset.  An individual does not have to hold an amateur radio license to participate at a level of responsibility in the program.

Given the technical nature of Auxiliary Communication Service requirements, and for appropriate placement of licensed individuals based on knowledge and skills, there are five levels of licensed operator classifications.

  1. Management level Operator.  Strong technical background, Additional FEMA IS and Emergency Management courses, knowledge of the county operations and experience with EOC operations. Able to work well with volunteers and county personnel.  This would be the level of the Auxiliary Communication Leader (ACL) and RACES Radio Officer (RO), the senior Deputy ACL’s and assistant RO’s.  Minimum of a General license, Extra preferred.
  1. Senior Operator level. EOC/MCU certification.  Good technical knowledge.  Additional FEMA IS and Emergency Management courses. This level would be for individuals being developed as Deputy ACL’s and Assistant RO’s. Could be assigned as Shift Supervisors in long duration mobilizations.  Minimum of a General license, Extra preferred.
  1. Advanced Operator level.  General or better license. More in depth theory and emergency operation detail.  Additional ICS training and FEMA IS courses. This is an experienced HF, V/UHF operator able to work competently in most circumstances in most locations.
  1. Basic Operator level.  Tech license. Basic disaster/emergency communication training.  A minimum of the four basic ICS courses.  Similar to our current “RACES Operator” definition. At least competent in V/UHF operations
  1. Entry level. Intake evaluation and initial orientation. Registration form filled out, submitted and accepted.  Amateur radio license of any class. Trainee level. Not deployable in emergency activations/mobilizations.  Can operate in training exercises and teamed with a competent mentor in public service events.

Licensed operators with acceptable and equivalent qualifications and experience could be placed, by Management Team action, at an appropriate level for the individual.  The trainee level provides the opportunity to bring a new ham in and get them involved immediately in training exercises.