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The Statewide Emergency Communications Board, originally called the Statewide Radio Board, is called for in Minnesota Statute 403.36

It is responsible for providing Minnesota residents and first responders with multiple and reliable means of communications before, during and after emergencies. The SECB is a 20-member board. Its governance structure is envied nationwide. The success is due in large part to the board's makeup. One-third of the board is from Greater Minnesota, one-third is from the Twin Cities metropolitan area and one-third is from state agencies providing public safety services. Participants, which represent all corners of Minnesota, are from state and local governments as well as multiple public safety disciplines.

Legislation in 2004 required the board to implement the Allied Radio Matrix Emergency Response System (ARMER). That is now just one of the four elements of interoperable communications overseen by the board. It also develops plans and standards for Next Generation 911 (NG911), the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) and FirstNet, which is the proposed Nationwide Public Safety Wireless Broadband Network.

Changes to the composition of the board were made in 2005, 2006, 2013 and 2015.