Congress Passes D-Block Allocation for Public Safety

Congress Passes D-Block Allocation for Public Safety

News Feb 17, 2012

The U.S. House and Senate voted Friday and passed the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 (H.R. 3630), which includes a provision dedicating a portion of the 700 MHz wireless airwaves known as the D-Block and $7 billion in funding to get a nationwide, wireless, broadband network up and running.

Efforts toward this goal have been ongoing for many years and have been backed by numerous public safety groups.

According to a press release from the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, the legislation will also do the following:

  • Create an independent First Responder Network Authority to be housed under the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, to develop the public safety network
  • Permit state efforts to develop their own networks using the same protocols as the national system
  • Provide up to $300 million for RandD critical for the development of next generation public safety communications
  • Preserve the opportunity for nationwide unlicensed use of spectrum known as white spaces to foster innovative new wireless technologies

 “Today is monumental for all Americans and our future safety, said committee Chairman John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV.

“Technology and the way we communicate are rapidly changing every day bringing us closer to one another, keeping us in touch in a way like never before, and ultimately improving most people’s lives. The ultimate gift technology can give is connecting us in a way that puts safety first. There is truly nothing more important than safety. And for those courageous and selfless first responders that risk their lives to save others every single day, this is the least we can do.

“Since 9/11, we have heard from police officers, firefighters and emergency medical personnel that communicating in a time of crisis is absolutely critical,” Rockefeller continued. “This agreement will allow us to build a nationwide, interoperable communications network that is as reliable as the first responders that protect us. It will quite literally save lives.” News
Leaders want to provide first responders with guidelines to follow when handling calls relating to human trafficking.
The study will assess Florida's Division of Emergency Management's response to Hurricane Irma and determine the lessons learned.
The state funding will provide 120,000 doses for first responders, including Pittsburgh park rangers.
The budget cut allowed the department to cross-staff, using firefighters to staff ambulances due to medical calls outnumbering fire calls.
Starting next year, the insurer will reimburse treatment that doesn’t require the emergency department.
One of the two Northern California wildfires have been fully contained due to cooler temperatures and light rain.
Kenneth Scheppke challenged longstanding traditions in patient care that have not withstood current scrutiny.

EMTs and other first responders who treated the wounded on scene of the Vegas shooting could be at risk for post-traumatic stress.

All EMS, fire, and law enforcement agencies in the county will participate in the drill along with 100 volunteers portraying victims of the shooting.
As the state begins facing the effects of the opioid crisis, medical professionals, law enforcement and prosecutors join the national discussion on possible solutions to the epidemic.
Only one of three in the country, the "rapid extrication team" assists in rescuing injured firefighters while local crews battle the forest fires.
The paramedic-staffed chase car would respond to ALS calls in a timelier manner and help alleviate several local fire departments' calls.
Las Vegas and Orlando massacres set a solemn tone for the normally festive event.
In a project to raise grant funding that began a year ago, the Richmond Ambulance Authority and VCU Health teamed up to provide 35 of Richmond’s Public Schools with Bleeding Control (BCON) equipment. 
Mercy Health's new two-story, 29,000 square foot center features a Level 1 trauma center, an expanded surgical area, and more comfortable patient and visitor access.