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Chicomm Blog

$135 Million in Grant Money for the Nation's Public Safety Broadband Network

Posted by Jill McNamara on Tuesday, September 4, 2012

NTIA Outlines the $135 Million in Grant money for the Nations Public SafetyBroadband Network

     A recent entry in the Federal Register lays out the use of $135 Million going to each state and what it can be used for. Basically, it will be used by the States to create their business plan and perform the necessary inventory audits. IT CAN’T BE USED TO START THE BUILDOUT OF THEIR NETWORK/S.

     Here is the NTIA plan for the $135 Million that will be allocated to the States to get things started.

Based on input received,eligible costs under the planning grant program will likely include the following categories of expenses:

  1. Hiring staff and consultants required for the planning process (such as project managers, program directors, engineers, grant administrators, financial analysts, accountants, and attorneys);
  2. Holding planning meetings with state agencies, local and tribal stakeholders, and regional partners;
  3. Covering travel costs for state, local, and tribal representatives to attend planning meetings (such as preparing for FirstNet consultations and attending state, regional, and national meetings that address public safety broadband issues);
  4. Developing, modifying, or enhancing state plans and governance structures, including efforts to adapt existing public safety governance authorities, such as the Statewide Interoperability Coordinators (SWIC), Statewide Interoperability Executive Committees (SIEC), and Statewide Interoperability Governing Bodies (SIGB), to include public safety broadband stakeholders and expertise, and determining the role of the state Chief Information Officers (CIO), Chief Technology Officers (CTO), or Chief Budget Officers (CBO);
  5. Conducting communications,education, and outreach activities with state, local, tribal, and regional stakeholders;
  6. Developing standardized MOUs and other types of agreements to facilitate access to and use of existing infrastructure;
  7. Identifying potential public safety users for the public safety broadband network;
  8. Administrative services and supplies necessary to prepare for and manage the grant program;
  9. Legal services related to the planning process; and
  10. Training costs related to the planning process.

 NTIA does not envision allowing funds awarded under the State and Local Implementation Grant Program to be used for activities related to site preparation, broadband deployment, installation, construction, or the acquisition of equipment used to provide wireless broadband services, including LTE-related activities.

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RCN2RichNowakowski resized 600This article was written by Rich Nowakowski, of RCN Consulting LLC.  Rich has 42 years of experience in Public Safety and Public Safety Communications including 10 years of grant writing experience. He can be contacted at:RCNConsulting@sbcglobal.net.