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RESTON, VA – The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) Board today gave the green light to fund key Strategic Program Roadmap activities in Fiscal Year 2016 that are vital to the deployment of the nationwide public safety broadband network (NPSBN).
During a special meeting held today via teleconference, the Board voted to adopt the Finance Committee’s recommended budget of $126 million for FirstNet in FY16. This amount funds priorities in the areas of acquisition, consultation, and corporate services, including a spectrum relocation grant program to clear spectrum for the network by moving current public safety incumbents to other bands.
“This budget, like prior years, supports the key outcomes and deliverables that the FirstNet team is focused on to stay on track with the Strategic Program Roadmap,” said FirstNet Chair Sue Swenson. “I am also pleased that the budget was developed and approved in advance of the new fiscal year enabling the team to maintain momentum towards the next set of key milestones.”
In approving Resolution 66, “Fiscal Year 2016 Budget,” the Board authorizes FirstNet management to obligate spending up to $86 million on acquisition activities to include the finalization and evaluation of the Request for Proposal (RFP), cyber security, and spectrum relocation; $28.7 million for consultation and outreach to the states, territories, federal agencies, tribal governments, and local jurisdictions; and $11.3 million in corporate services and other expenses.
FirstNet has been obligated by Congress to take all actions necessary to ensure the building, deployment, and operation of the nationwide public safety broadband network for local, state, regional, tribal, and federal first responders. FirstNet is an independent authority within the U.S. Department of Commerce National Telecommunications and Information Administration that is governed by a 15-member Board that consists of the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Attorney General of the United States, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, and 12 members appointed by the Secretary of Commerce composed of representatives from public safety, government, and the wireless industry (www.firstnet.gov).