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National Guard dual-status commander appointed for floods

DENVER — Friday, Sept. 13, 2013 — Gov. John Hickenlooper this afternoon requested a Dual-Status Commander to support flood response and relief efforts in Colorado, and the request was approved this evening by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel. This action is similar to previous arrangements for wildfire assistance with the High Park, Waldo Canyon and Black Forest fires.


When agreed upon by the Secretary of Defense and the governor of an affected state, Dual-Status Commanders can direct federal active-duty and reserve forces and state National Guard forces in response to domestic incidents.


The request by Hickenlooper for approval stated:


“I grant consent for Brigadier General Peter J. Byrne, Colorado Air National Guard, to be activated and to serve in both State and Federal duty statuses as Dual-Status Commander for the purpose of combating floods in Colorado. In his State National Guard status, the jurisdiction in which Brigadier General Byrne may perform his duties as Dual-Status Commander is the State of Colorado.


“Brigadier General Byrne’s service as a Dual-Status commander is not expected to exceed 30 days beginning on or about September 14, 2013, and ending on or about October 13, 2013.”


Earlier this summer, Byrne was appointed Dual-Status Commander for the Black Forest Fire. Byrne will work with flood incident commanders to provide unity and expedite services for the communities in the flooded areas.


Byrne serves as the Director of the Joint Staff, Joint Force Headquarters-Colorado National Guard, and he is the commander of the standing Joint Task Force - Centennial.