The council has monitored the operational readiness of the Alyeska Ship Escort/Response Vessel System (SERVS) and the oil shipping companies, through this project since 1992. Both the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA 90) and the council's contract with Alyeska task the council with monitoring the operational readiness of the Alyeska Ship Escort/Response Vessel System (SERVS) and the oil shipping companies. The council observes, monitors, and reports on spill response drills, exercises, and training in the Prince William Sound/Northern Gulf of Alaska region to provide citizens, regulatory agencies, and oil spill responders with information about readiness as well as recommendations for improvement. Prior to 2005, an independent contractor hired by the council provided reports for making recommendations to improve all areas of the spill response program. The contractor provided annual reports summarizing activities, lessons learned, recommendations, and outstanding issues. The council now devotes a full-time staff position to this important task.