It may be necessary to build two organizational elements: ARES and ACS/RACES, with their goals, training and use totally separate. Let the ARES do only what they will, but elevate the ACS/RACES to a much higher level of participation even if it means you only have a few specialists in it. Just make it very clear that no one will be called upon to support the local government unless they have the REQUIRED MANDATORY TRAINING.
The concept embodied in ACS/RACES is that the ACS (Auxiliary Communications Service) is a PART of the local government and NOT a separate group operating under an MOU with government such as ARES. If, however, ARES is realistically the source of the support then designate the agency-appointed Radio Officer as an Asst. EC. This will preserve the ACS/RACES as a "separate arm" and let it operate it under the jurisdictions rules and regulations as a unit of government.
Formal training could be extremely valuable as it is discipline teaching - in that it causes formation of important habits that can help avoid future problems. There is also the experience gained in learning to interface with those experienced in the particular field of the specified training. Mandated training (i.e., paid for) by the agency could be a valuable start on something greater. Also, tactfully, with an ACS/RACES unit it is much better to accept the mandated training and AUGMENT it with special training designed for communicators.
Continues next bulletin.