EMS District Meetings 1, 3, and 6
The VT Public Safety Broadband Commission’s outreach team was busy August 16-22! They presented at 3 different EMS District Meetings: EMS District 1 at the Northwestern Medical Center in St. Albans; EMS District 3 at UVM Medical Center in Burlington; EMS District 6 at Central Vermont Hospital in Berlin.
At all 3 meetings, similar concerns were expressed about the user fees that FirstNet might charge to public safety entities. A FirstNet tenet is that it needs “to offer public safety grade services at a cost that’s competitive and compelling to users.” This was communicated to the attendees of each EMS district meeting at which the outreach team presented. Another concern expressed was about how FirstNet was going to be funded. It was communicated by the outreach team that the specifics of FirstNet’s funding are uncertain. FirstNet plans to become financially sustainable through private-public partnerships to decrease network buildout costs, and through selling excess network capacity to commercial carriers. The federal legislation that created FirstNet mandates the organization to sustain itself. FirstNet will have a clearer picture of user fees once vendor(s) is chosen for the construction of the network.