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Telecom Business Alert - Updated NECP, FirstNet Board Appointees, Sprint Rebanding and Annual Regulatory Fees Released Vol. XI Issue 36

Date: Sep 08, 2014

September 8, 2014, Volume XI, Issue 36

Updated NECP, FirstNet Board Appointees, Sprint Rebanding and Annual Regulatory Fees Released

Updated National Emergency Communications Plan

Last week, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson signed the updated National Emergency Communications Plan (NECP).  Established in 2008, the NECP sets out standards for emergency response personnel, as well as major goals focused on response-level communications.  According to Chris Essid, Deputy Director of OEC, the updated NECP continues to drive land mobile radio improvements, planning for emergency communications technologies such as FirstNet, and improved coordination among stakeholders.  The DHS Office of Emergency Communications (OEC), reports the updated plan should be released to the public in the near future.  For more information, please contact Al Catalano (catalano@khlaw.com; 202.434.4207).

New FirstNet Board Appointees

Last week Secretary of Commerce Penny Priszker announced the appointment of five new appointees to serve on the FirstNet Board.  The new members are Chris Burbank (Chief of Police, Salt Lake City Police Department), James Douglas (former Governor of Vermont), Annise Parker (Mayor, City of Houston, Texas), Frank Plastina (technology executive, North Carolina), Ed Reynolds (retired telecommunications executive – reappointed), and Richard Stanek (Sherrif, Hennepin County, Minnesota).  The new appointees replace four Board members whose terms expired on August 20, as well as two members who chose to step down from their positions as board members.  For more information, please contact Al Catalano (catalano@khlaw.com; 202.434.4207).

Sprint’s 800 MHz Rebanding Status

In a report submitted to the FCC last week, Sprint stated that 39 of 55 regions are 100% complete with physical retuning related to its 800 MHz band reconfiguration.  The reconfiguration is still incomplete in 16 of the National Public Safety Planning Advisory Committee (NPSPAC) regions (which include five along the U.S.-Mexican border and the state of Washington).  Much of the rebanding work that remains is in California, Arizona, and part of Texas along the Mexican border.  For more information, please contact Greg Kunkle (kunkle@khlaw.com; 202.414.4178). 

Annual FCC Regulatory Fees

On August 29, the FCC released a Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking announcing regulatory fees for the fiscal year 2014.  Licensees of certain facilities, such as Satellite Earth Stations, are required to make annual regulatory fee payments which are due by September 23, 2014.  For many licensed facilities, such as microwave and land mobile systems, the regulatory fee is are paid as part of an application fee charged at the time an application for new authority or application for renewal is submitted to the Commission.  Private Land Mobile and Microwave users will notice a slight decrease in annual regulatory fees assessed for new or renewal applications.  For questions or assistance with submitting regulatory fee payments, please contact Tim Doughty (doughty@khlaw.com; 202.434.4271).

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