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RESTON, VA – The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) Finance Committee today approved Fiscal Year 2015 (FY15) funding guidance that supports program roadmap activities in the areas of Request for Proposal (RFP) development for the purpose of identifying and negotiating key private-public partnership arrangements; network planning and development; consultation with regional, state, tribal, and local jurisdictions; and organizational operations and infrastructure. The Finance Committee held a special meeting via a public teleconference during which it unanimously approved Resolution 8.
“Today we are funding steps that will help us continue the accomplishment of critical roadmap milestones and move us closer to deploying a nationwide public safety broadband network,” said FirstNet Chairman Sue Swenson. "The resolution supports our top priorities for this fiscal year while taking a measured approach to our operations going forward,” said Swenson, who serves on the Finance Committee with Committee Chair Tim Bryan, Ed Reynolds, James H. Douglas, Frank Plastina, and Brian Deese.
Under the approved resolution, FirstNet management may spend up to $86.2 million in FY15, including up to $42.5 million on a comprehensive RFP and certain network development activities; $22.3 million on consultation, planning, and outreach activities; and up to $21.4 million on FirstNet organizational infrastructure, project support, and administrative functions. The funding authorized is within the FY15 budget of $120 million that the FirstNet Board adopted at its September Board meeting.
FirstNet Acting General Manager TJ Kennedy said today that the consultation and RFP elements would be the “main thrusts” going forward in FY15. “They are very much interrelated and key elements of what we need to accomplish,” Kennedy said. For a more detailed breakdown of the FY15 funding guidelines, please see Finance Committee Resolution 8 with Attachment 1.
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 national 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 appointed by the Secretary of Commerce that consists of representatives from public safety, government, and the wireless industry (www.firstnet.gov).