Monday, April 26, 2004

DHS Releases Interoperability Requirements for Nation's First Responder Community: "The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Science and Technology Directorate today announced the release of the first comprehensive Statement of Requirements (SoR) document outlining future technology requirements for public safety wireless communications and interoperability. The SoR can be found at"

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Kentucky Wireless Interoperability Legislation Passes: "Kentucky House Bill 226 has been signed into law by the governor. The bill requires the chief information officer to establish and implement a statewide public safety interoperability plan. The plan must include the development of required architecture and standards to ensure that new or upgraded public safety systems will interoperate. "

Monday, April 19, 2004

Secretary Ridge's Remarks at Radio-Television News Directors Association and Foundation: "[T]he Department will work to strengthen vertical communication systems and significantly increase protections around our nation's most vital assets--our bridges and water supplies, telecommunications and cyber-systems, chemical and nuclear facilities, hospitals and laboratories, food processing systems and more. We will establish secure, real-time communications between all 50 states and the territories, install secure videoconferencing to all Governors' offices, and identify technical specifications to establish baseline interoperability of communications for first responders."

Sunday, April 18, 2004

GAO: Project Safecom Making Limited Progress : "The GAO, the investigative arm of Congress, cites two main reasons for the project's limited progress: lack of consistent executive commitment and support and an inadequate level of interagency cooperation. In its 2-1/2-year history, Project Safecom has had four management teams in three different agencies. Though the current team is laying the foundation for future interoperability--including establishing a governance structure that emphasizes collaboration with stakeholders and developing guidance for making grants that can be used to encourage public-safety agencies to plan for interoperability--it has yet to reach written agreements with several major stakeholders on their roles in the project or establish a stable funding mechanism, the GAO said. The major stakeholders include the departments of Agriculture, Defense, Energy, Health and Human Services, Justice, and Interior. "
GAO calls for formal Safecom deals: "For now, the program appears to have found significant executive support within its new home at DHS' Science and Technology Directorate. However, the program office is still working to address GAO officials' primary concern: that there aren't many written formal agreements between the office and its federal partners, and of the few that are in place, some do not have established goals and performance measures."
GAO: Project Safecom going nowhere fast: "A government initiative to improve communications among first responders at the federal, state and local levels 'has made very limited progress,' according to a report released today [4/16/04] by the General Accounting Office. "

Monday, April 12, 2004

GCN on enterprise architectures: "...a basic structure or design for all the agency's real-world businesses, such as licensing or law enforcement, related information flows and the technologies that handle them. It's an exercise in system design and analysis, more than anything, and is meant to ensure that components cooperate and share data. "
D.C. government to test broadband wireless technology: "The pilot network, based on Flarion's proprietary flash-orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM) technology, will use 10 transmission sites to provide citywide coverage for first responders needing to access the network in the field. "
Harris County SO (TX) installing 1XRTT: "The new wireless system will replace an existing CDPD solution and help officers in this region expand their capabilities to retrieve critical information in the field with high-speed CDMA2000 1X technology from Sierra Wireless. "
MeshNetworks announces City of Garland (TX) replacement for CDPD: According to the company, Garland represents the first and largest deployment for public safety.

Wednesday, April 07, 2004

Progress toward [AZ] statewide emergency response: "State officials say they are making slow but steady progress toward a statewide emergency communications system that would allow different agencies to communicate with one another during a major crisis. "
Integrators see opportunities in communications interoperability: "While many technology companies struggle to crack the market for interoperable communications in public safety and homeland security, integrators such as EDS are finding success by expanding work with existing government customers. In many cases, these companies are testing new solutions in proof-of-concept demonstration projects."

Saturday, April 03, 2004

800 MHz interference and interoperability - FCC testimony before Congress: "The 800 MHz band issue was raised by Chairman Frank Wolf (R-Va.) but Wolf confused it with the public-safety interoperability issue, causing Powell to try and explain the similarities and differences between the 800 MHz public-safety interference problem and the inability of public-safety agencies to talk with each other during periods of crisis. "
Arizona responders seek public safety communications funding by law: "Funding for the First Responders Bill would come from a surcharge on satellite TV companies that take money out of Arizona but don't contribute anything to the public safety of our state. The surcharge, however, wouldn't apply in those areas where satellite is the only option for subscription television."