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Friday, May 7th, 2021

First Responders

National Guard wildfire readiness assessment sought

A group of lawmakers is seeking the National Guard’s assessment of wildfire readiness as a means of aiding states in preparing, fighting, and recovering from such occurrences. Sens. Ron Wyden (D-OR), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) recently joined... Read More »

Bill seeks to enhance first responder data

Reps. Susan Wild (D-PA) and Fred Keller (R-PA) introduced Wednesday a measure designed to address chronic miscounting of first responders, chiefly firefighters, and emergency medical services (EMS) personnel. The EMS Counts Act of 2020 would ensure the government’s nationwide collection of... Read More »

DHS expands first responders technology assessment

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate’s (S&T’s) Project 25 Compliance Assessment Program (P25 CAP) has initiated an effort to perform third-party first responder equipment assessments. The Department of Interior laboratory in Denver, Colorado, would... Read More »

FirstNet establishes Maryland cell site

Cecil County, Maryland officials said first responders there are recipients of a new, purpose-built FirstNet cell site - providing a boost in wireless communications. "This is great news for Earleville, Cecil County, and the surrounding areas,” Maryland State Sen. Steve Hershey (R-Dist. 36)... Read More »

DHS to evaluate first responder technology solutions

The Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) Operational Experimentation (OpEx) Program has launched an effort to evaluate first responder technology solutions. The OpEx Program has released a Request for Information (RFI) with four Technical Topic Areas... Read More »

DHS S&T seeking portable radio repeaters

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) officials said the agency has posted a request for information regarding portable radio repeater products. The initiative targets emergency responder community indoor and subterranean environments. S&T’s National... Read More »

FirstNet Board approves 2021 budget

The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet Authority) Board has approved FirstNet’s $213 million budget for Fiscal Year 2021, acknowledging focus on the nationwide public safety broadband network’s operations and investments. “This budget provides steady funding for the FirstNet... Read More »

Osterthaler to chair FirstNet Board

Robert Tipton (Tip) Osterthaler has been appointed by Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross to serve as Chair of the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet Authority) Board. “Tip Osterthaler has been an instrumental FirstNet Board member who will bring exceptional leadership to the... Read More »

Measure targets PFAS firefighting foam alternative

A group of lawmakers recently introduced a bill they said is designed to find an alternative to PFAS contaminated firefighting foam. Reps. Madeleine Dean (D-PA), Mike Gallagher (R-WI), Andy Kim (D-NJ), Dan Kildee (D-MI) and Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA) said the PFAS Free Foam Research and... Read More »

DHS initiates NG911 systems viability testing

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) and Department of Transportation (DOT) have initiated the Next Generation 911 (NG911) systems interoperability and compatibility testing process. The agencies have selected the Critical Infrastructure Resilience... Read More »

FirstNet executes NY expansion effort

First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) officials said the high-speed broadband communications platform dedicated to and purpose built for America’s first responders is expanding across New York state. Officials are espousing the benefits of adding 22 new FirstNet cell sites and other... Read More »

Measure advocates domestic PPE manufacturing

A trio of lawmakers have introduced a measure they said decreases dependence on foreign countries for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for healthcare providers. Sens. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and Mike Rounds (R-SD) said the U.S. MADE Act of 2020 lessens domestic... Read More »

FirstNet expands North Carolina reach

First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) officials said the high-speed broadband communications platform dedicated to first responders has expanded across North Carolina as a means of advancing public safety communications. “FirstNet is a dedicated broadband platform for public safety, by... Read More »

Bill targets military firefighter PFAS care

Rep. Dan Kildee (D-MI) has introduced a measure that ensures military firefighters exposed to toxic per and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) chemicals receive Department of Veterans’ Affairs (VA) healthcare. Currently, military firefighters exposed to firefighting foam containing PFAS are not... Read More »

Marine firefighters participate in training exercise

Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting Marines based out of Marine Corps Air Station Camp Pendleton recently participated in a mobile aircraft fire fighting training exercise alongside San Diego County firefighters. The effort executed at the San Diego International Airport in San Diego, Calif.,... Read More »

Bill targets PFAS examination, firefighter exposure

Reps. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) and Bill Posey (R-FL) have introduced a measure they said is designed to examine per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and firefighter exposure to the chemicals. The Guaranteeing Equipment Safety for Firefighters Act of 2020 requires the National Institute of... Read More »

NENA supports 9-1-1 enhancement initiative

National Emergency Number Association (NENA) personnel said the organization supports the House of Representatives’ recent action creating a new $12 billion federal grant program upgrading the nation’s 9-1-1 centers. Next Generation 9-1-1 was incorporated into the Moving Forward Act, a... Read More »

R2 Network Challenge funds awarded

First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) officials recently joined a trio of agencies in presenting Accelerate R2 Network (R2 Network) Challenge awards. The initiative serves as an interagency program connecting stakeholder response and resilience. The Department of Commerce, Economic... Read More »