Thursday, March 25, 2010

Werner on Virtual USA - podcast: "The nation's ability to share information seamlessly across localities, states and regions still is limited. To address the problem, the DHS Science and Technology Directorate's Command, Control and Interoperability Division — assisted by the First Responder Technologies program — created Virtual USA."

Thursday, March 18, 2010

FCC unveils plan for public safety network: "Federal efforts to create interoperable first-responder communications could receive a boost with an FCC plan to spend between $12 million and $16 million on a nationwide interoperable public safety wireless broadband network.

James Barnett, head of the FCC's public safety and homeland security bureau, wrote about FCC plans Wednesday in a blog post.

'Our central recommendation is the creation of a nationwide interoperable public safety broadband wireless network through incentive-based partnerships between public safety agencies and the partner of their choice,' he wrote. His plan 'also recommends that the FCC create an Emergency Response Interoperability Center (ERIC) to ensure a baseline of operability and interoperability for the network nationwide.'"

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

FCC plan calls for 'minimal' public safety fee for all broadband users: "The FCC's National Broadband Plan, released today, calls for a new 'minimal' fee on all U.S. broadband users to help pay for a new $16 billion nationwide emergency response wireless network.

Public safety officials have pleaded for such an interoperable network to aid their response to disasters and potential attacks since firefighters and police could not communicate effectively during the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and the response following Hurricane Katrina."

Friday, March 05, 2010

DHS Announces New Interoperability Grants for Border States: "The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Emergency Communications (OEC) launched the Border Interoperability Demonstration Project (BIDP), a competitive demonstration grant program designed to identify innovative solutions to emergency communications challenges along and across the border. Applications are due April 26."
FCC talks National Broadband: "It's just over two weeks until the FCC presents its National Broadband Plan (March 16th), but already, the regulator has started slipping out details of the plan, including a promise to find 500MHz of spectrum for wireless broadband and a request for Congress to cough up $16bn for a public-safety network to be integrated with priority access to commercial networks."

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

FCC to Recommend $16B in Grant Funding for 700 MHz Broadband Network : "Although the FCC will recommend moving forward with a D block auction, it will also recommend that Congress consider significant public funding — $12 billion to $16 billion over 10 years — for a federal grant program to help support network construction and operation and maintenance of a 700 MHz pubic-safety broadband network. FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski released the public-safety national broadband plan details at a briefing Thursday.

The FCC’s recommendations include creation of an approximately $6 billion federal grant program to help support network construction and additional funding for operation of the broadband network. About $6 billion of the grant program would support capital costs of the public-safety network over 10 years. Another $6 billion to $10 billion program would cover operation of the network over 10 years and to upgrade the network as technology advances."