Verizon Communications, Inc., has decided not to bid in response to California’s request for proposals (RFP) seeking an alternative to the plan it received from the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) (TR Daily, Nov.20).
“Verizon remains committed to supporting public safety customers and agencies in California and across the country. Unfortunately, after carefully and extensively reviewing the state’s RFP requirements, we have chosen not to bid on the state of California’s RFP,” Verizon said in a statement. “Technical and financial requirements dictated by the draft Spectrum Management Lease Agreement (SMLA) saddled the state of California’s RFP – through no fault of its own – with onerous and vaguely-defined mandates that impacted our ability to create an RFP response we believe best served public safety and Verizon. Vigorous competition that allows the industry and the marketplace to continue to grow and innovate is in the best interest of public safety and should be everyone’s shared goal. Instead, we believe FirstNet and its corporate partner are rigging the game in order to stifle true open competition. Our decision not to submit an RFP response in no way impacts our work with public safety customers in California. We continue to support them every day, including actively working with public safety officials during the ongoing southern California wildfires.”
To compete with AT&T, Inc., FirstNet’s network partner, Verizon is building a public safety core and offering priority access and preemption to public safety agencies.
State and local officials in California have been critical of aspects of the FirstNet state plan and the potential $15 billion termination fee included in the draft SMLA that it received. —Paul Kirby, firstname.lastname@example.org