NICE Systems
PSC eNews Weekly
Friday, August 12, 2016
Thank you to the many members who responded to our second Call to Action and submitted formal comments urging the federal government to reclassify Public Safety Telecommunicators as "Protective" occupations. We are still encouraging members, their colleagues, and supporters to continue to file personalized comments that include specific examples that highlight how public safety telecommunicators protect and save the lives of the general public and responders here. As a reminder, formal comments are due by September 20.

As a next step, we are asking members to contact elected officials in Congress. Go to APCO’s Take Action page and send a letter to your U.S. Senators and key U.S. Representatives explaining the importance of reclassification. There will also be an opportunity to submit letters during APCO’s conference in Orlando from the APCO Pavilion in the Exhibit Hall on Monday and Tuesday. If you need assistance or have questions, APCO Government Relations staff will be available from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Monday, and from 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday.

Remember that there will be a conference session about reclassification Sunday at 9:30 a.m. in the Convention Center, W207AB. A recording of this session will be posted online approximately one week after conference.
 
The September 2016 issue of The Atlantic contains an article by Steven Brill entitled "The $47 Billion Network That’s Already Obsolete." The piece questions the need for FirstNet and offers several negative opinions of the author. In reaction, APCO Executive Director and CEO Derek Poarch issued the following statement:

"APCO does not usually react to hyperbolic and inaccurate pieces of media that are clearly aimed at inciting a response, as opposed to educating readers or contributing to legitimate discourse. However, in the case of the article entitled ‘The $47 Billion Network That’s Already Obsolete’ appearing in the September 2016 issue of The Atlantic by Steven Brill, we must come to the defense of FirstNet’s high-quality and devoted leadership and staff, and all of the thousands in the public safety community that have worked so hard to support FirstNet. As the world’s largest association of public safety communications professionals, we take issue with Mr. Brill’s inflammatory claims. Mr. Brill and The Atlantic are at best misinformed about public safety communications matters. They have done a disservice to the citizens of our country, our brave first responders, and public safety communications professionals across the country by publishing an article that is more about attention-gathering than fact-based journalism. The truth is that FirstNet has made enormous strides undertaking a project unique in the world and of the highest importance to public safety and emergency response."
 
As the APCO conference team heads to Orlando, FL, to prep for APCO 2016, we wish all those joining us safe travels and remind those who can’t make it this year that you can still follow what’s going on during the show. Look for our Show Dailies which will include daily coverage, announcements, interviews, photos and more.
 
Ralph Bevan has worked for 37 years in the communications field, starting with his training and service in the Air Force Worldwide Communication System from 1979-1983. After leaving the Air Force, Ralph spent seven years in his home state of Florida working for the Florida Highway Patrol - first headquartering in Tallahassee for a year with Troop H before transferring to Palatka and working with Troop G Communication as a Tech II maintaining communication systems. He also traveled the state as needed and occasionally filled in as a dispatcher.
 
Silent Key
Stratford (CT) Police Department dispatcher Laura Price, 35, of Seymour, died in the hospital on Monday, Aug. 8, 2016, following a motor vehicle accident, according to the Connecticut Post. The former firefighter had finished working a double shift and was on her way home when her vehicle ran head-on into a tree.
 
Globalstar
Zetron, Inc.
Industry News
News Channel 25 Text-to-9-1-1 service is now available in several Brazos Valley counties, including Burleson, Grimes, Leon, Madison, Robertson and Washington.
 
WAPT News Video: A dispatcher in Hartford, CT, was moved to help a handicapped resident in need after taking a unique call.
 
KCBS California’s 9-1-1 emergency dispatch system had nearly $77 million dollars three years ago. Now, it’s down to less than $11 million.
 
Smoky Mountain News The Haywood County Sheriff’s Office will soon have full 9-1-1 text message capabilities. Right now, operators in the 9-1-1 communications center are capable of receiving some text messages. However, they are still in the testing phase with the wireless carriers and the plan is to go live with all carriers once the new 9-1-1 center opens at the end of August.
 
IWCE’s Urgent Communications While most August headlines are focused on the political arena during this election year, let’s not forget that an important public-safety initiative is quietly moving forward. This week, FirstNet will get another important staff member: Bill Schrier, chief technology officer of the Seattle police department.
 
CALEA
 
Solacom Technologies
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