FirstNet Weekly Update to the Public Safety Advisory Committee (PSAC) – February 27, 2017

FirstNet News

In our new FirstNet 101 video, FirstNet Board Chair Sue Swenson highlights the importance of FirstNet to public safety.  Watch and learn about how FirstNet will answer public safety’s needs by putting advanced communications technology, apps, and devices into the hands of first responders and other public safety personnel — helping them save lives and protect communities across our nation.

Last week, FirstNet CEO Mike Poth, Board Member Governor Jim Douglas, and staff provided a FirstNet briefing to numerous gubernatorial Chiefs of Staff during a working session at the National Governors Association Winter Meeting in Washington, DC.

On Friday, FirstNet President TJ Kennedy provided a briefing to the Adjutants General Association of the United States in Washington, DC.  

Also last week, FirstNet Board member Kevin McGinnis and staff attended the EMS Today JEMS Conference & Expo in Salt Lake City, Utah, staffing the FirstNet booth and participating in a productive panel discussion.

FirstNet staff held meetings last week with tribal and public safety leadership from the Navajo Nation and Hopi Tribe in Flagstaff, Arizona.  Staff answered a variety of questions from the Navajo Nation and Hopi Tribe leaders, and the SPOC teams from Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah shared how each state has engaged tribes within their respective state.

FirstNet was also in Phoenix, Arizona last week to brief members of the Indian Country Intelligence Network. Chief Customer Officer Rich Reed and staff provided a FirstNet update and answered various questions on FirstNet planning and implementation, as well as issues regarding rural and tribal areas. FirstNet staff also shared information about the Tribal Government Outreach team’s tribal public safety data collection efforts, and collaborated with tribes’ representatives to share data.

This week, FirstNet will be participating in the 2017 California Chapter of the National Emergency Number Association (CalNENA) Conference in San Diego, California; Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain; the National Association of Tower Erectors’ UNITE 2017 in Fort Worth, Texas; the APCO Emerging Technology Forum in Raleigh, North Carolina; the Fire Chiefs of Massachusetts Professional Development Conference in Worcester; the Northwest Rural Health Conference in Seattle, Washington; the AFCEA DC Mobile Technology Summit in Washington; the Global Infrastructure Leadership Forum in Montreal, Canada; the Global City Team Challenge Public Safety SuperCluster Workshop in Washington, DC; a meeting of the New Hampshire Fire Service in Concord; the Central Virginia EMS Expo in Henrico; the National Association of State EMS Officials (NASEMSO) Spring 2017 Meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana; and the Western States Sheriffs’ Association Annual Training and Vendor Exhibition in Reno, Nevada.

Last week, FirstNet posted two new blog posts: FirstNet: Building the Nation’s Dedicated, Advanced Public Safety Communications Network and FirstNet Annual Report: Fiscal Year 2016 Marked Significant Achievements in Making Network a Reality for Public Safety. All blog posts are available on the FirstNet blog at:

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News from the PSAC, States and Territories

The PSAC’s Executive Committee (EC) held its monthly teleconference on Monday, February 27 from 4:00pm-5:00pm ET.

FirstNet is planning to hold an in-person PSAC meeting on Thursday, June 15th, 2017, in San Antonio, TX, after the conclusion of the PSCR annual conference.  Further details on location and invitational travel are forthcoming, and PSAC members are asked to hold the date on their calendars.  Please email with any questions.

The 2017 Tennessee Advanced Communications Network (TACN) Regional Public Safety Broadband Conferences are March 7th, 8th, and 9th from 10am-3pm.  The Conferences are free to attend and lunch will be provided. Register at

Media Watch

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Mission Critical Communications 2/23: FirstNet Releases Annual Report to Congress

The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) released its annual report to Congress. This month marks the fifth anniversary of the legislation that created FirstNet. “Over the last fiscal year, FirstNet accomplished many major milestones, with the most significant being the gains made in the acquisition process for the deployment of the nationwide public-safety broadband network,” said Edward Parkinson, FirstNet director of government affairs, in a blog post about the report.

Urgent Communications 2/23: Judge schedules oral arguments in FirstNet case for March 3

Oral arguments in the lawsuit filed by the Rivada Mercury bidding team protesting evaluations in the FirstNet procurement process will be heard next Friday, March 3, a federal judge ruled today.

Urgent Communications 2/21: Five years later, public safety can see the light at the end of the FirstNet tunnel

Tomorrow marks the five-year anniversary of President Barack Obama signing into law the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012. At the time, the headline-grabbing aspects of the legislation were an extension of the Social Security payroll tax cut and myriad initiatives designed to provide assistance to the large unemployed population. Today, the tax-cut and unemployment benefits from this law largely have been forgotten. However, a generally overlooked feature of the bill finally is on the verge of becoming reality: FirstNet’s nationwide public-safety broadband network.

 Web and Social Media

FirstNet’s social media presence grew at the normal rate this week.  Twitter gained 37 new followers, now at 5,110.  Facebook has 712 followers.  LinkedIn now has 1,878 followers.  YouTube has 384 subscribers.

Do you have something you want to feature in the weekly update, such as a conference date, personnel announcement, or news article showcasing the work of your organization?  Please send it to for possible inclusion in an upcoming update.