A report just released by Commerce’s NTIA and FEMA at DHS provides an in depth analyzes on the nearly $1 billion Public Safety Interoperable Communications (PSIC) Grant Program funded in September 2007. The awards were awarded to help state and local first responders improve public safety communications and coordination during disasters.
The report “Improving Interoperable Communications Nationwide: Overview of Initial State and Territory Investments”, discusses findings from the agencies and their analyses of state, territory, and local communications initiatives. The agencies also established a baseline for measuring each program’s anticipated impact on interoperable communications across the nation.
The report serves as a foundational document against which PSIC grantees and their progress will be examined. The findings will be periodically updated, as additional states are approved for the release of funds and as states modify their projects to respond to changing needs.
Some of the key findings were:
- More than one half of the investments were for new initiatives not previously funded
- More than 90 percent ($811 million) of PSIC funds were designated by State and local agencies for the acquisition and deployment of equipment to increase emergency communications interoperability
- Forty seven states and territories will allocate $75 million of their PSIC funds to establish equipment reserves that are prepositioned, deployable, and able to re-establish communications
- PSIC was the first grant program to require states and territories to align their investments to a DHS approved Statewide Communications Interoperability Plan. This ensures that investments were coordinated across multiple jurisdictions and disciplines
Florida ($42,888,266), Illinois ($36,414,263, Texas ($65,069,247), New York ($60,734,783), New Jersey ($30,806,646), and California ($94,034,510 were awarded the most funding.
Details on PSIC projects by states and territories are available at www.ntia.doc.gov/psic.