Recent developments in high-speed, wireless communications technology have presented an opportunity to provide public safety members with enhanced capabilities to share information and communicate during emergencies and day-to-day operations. The Commerce Department today announced the appointment of 12 members of the First Responder Network Authority, or “FirstNet,” marking an important milestone in the implementation of a Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network (NPSBN).
The DHS Office of Cybersecurity and Communications (CS&C) has been actively involved in implementing the NPSBN. As one of three Federal representatives on the FirstNet board, Secretary Napolitano will work with her Federal counterparts and the appointed members of the Board to ensure the successful deployment, governance, and operations of the NPSBN. This diverse Board includes experts in the fields of public safety, technology, network operations, and finance, and represents those who are committed to ensuring that our first responders have access to a secure, reliable, and dedicated interoperable network.
CS&C is working to ensure that our stakeholders have the information and assistance they need to prepare for network deployment in their areas. To that end, CS&C is offering on-site support through its Technical Assistance Program to assist users with broadband technology and early planning for its use in public safety operations. In addition, we are assisting states in incorporating broadband planning into their Statewide Communication Interoperability Plans through workshops around the country.
The establishment of the FirstNet Board represents an important milestone in the implementation of the NPSBN, and I look forward to continuing to work with our stakeholders to ensure the success of the NPSBN.