In our latest Annual Report to Congress, the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet Authority) outlines the significant progress made in fiscal year (FY) 2018 to deliver on Congress’s vision of creating a truly nationwide, interoperable broadband public safety network. It was a landmark year for public safety, as the FirstNet network deployment began ahead of schedule following the decisions of all U.S. states and territories and the District of Columbia to participate in the deployment of the nationwide public safety broadband network.
Today, public safety entities throughout the nation are benefitting from the power of the network as they respond to emergencies and in their daily operations. This includes more than 7,250 agencies using more than 600,000 connections on the FirstNet network, and over 100 devices approved and certified for use on the FirstNet network.
In addition, FY 2018 was marked by our continued, productive engagement and collaboration with federal agencies, the states, territories, tribes, local agencies, and industry. The FirstNet Authority worked with jurisdictions and organizations across the country to educate first responders about the benefits of broadband for public safety and the ways it is changing vital public safety communications. We will continue to directly interact with and obtain input from our stakeholders to ensure the network meets their communications needs – now and in the future. This includes the development of a Roadmap to advance FirstNet, in coordination with the public safety community and based on industry trends.
The FirstNet Authority was created to ensure the building, deployment, operation, maintenance, and improvement of a nationwide broadband network that serves public safety across the nation, from crowded cities to the most rural parts of the country. We made significant strides in delivering the promise of the FirstNet network in FY 2018, and we will continue our efforts to advance and enhance public safety communications in the years to come.