FCC votes to resurrect public-safety network idea

The Federal Communications Commission unanimously decided to resurrect plans to create a nationwide emergency communications network after the D-block 700 MHz auction failed to garner a company willing to build a nationwide broadband network for both commercial and public-safety users.

The commission is now seeking public input on how it can modify this plan and make it more attractive to an operator. It also wants to know whether the concept should be scrapped altogether and the D block be auctioned for commercial use.

After the agency's 5-0 vote on the D block, Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif.) introduced legislation to authorize $4 million to begin funding the Public Safety Spectrum Trust Corp., the 700 MHz public-safety broadband licensee that would partner with a winning commercial D-block bidder under the shared wireless broadband network model.

For more about the public-safety network concept:
- read this article from AP News
check out this report from RCR Wireless News