4 States Divert 9-1-1 Funds in 2012, $97M Spent on NG 9-1-1 (1/27/14)
Monday, January 27, 2014 | Comments

In its fifth report on states’ use of 9-1-1 fees, the FCC found four states that reported at least some use of a portion of 9-1-1 fees and charges for non-9-1-1-related purposes in 2012. The report also tracked spending on next-generation 9-1-1 (NG 9-1-1), which totaled $97.4 million in 2012.

The number of states diverting funds is down from seven the year before.

Specifically, New York and Rhode Island reported that they assigned collected 9-1-1 fees and charges to their state’s general fund. Illinois reported that funds were legislatively transferred from the state’s Wireless Services Emergency Fund in fiscal-year 2013, but didn’t specify how the transferred money was used.

Kansas reported enforcement actions undertaken in response to the possible use of funds for purposes other than those designated in the state statute, with several expenditures awaiting final resolution.

The data is part of the FCC’s fifth annual public report to Congress called State Collection and Distribution of 9-1-1 and Enhanced 9-1-1 Fees and Charges. The report includes, among other things, whether 9-1-1 fees and charges collected by the states, the District of Columbia, U.S. territories and Indian territories are being used for any purpose other than to support 9-1-1 and enhanced 9-1-1 (E9-1-1) services.

The report covers the collection and distribution of 9-1-1 and E9-1-1 fees and charges for the calendar year ending Dec. 31, 2012, and was submitted to Congress Dec. 31, 2013. Information submitted by the states and other reporting entities is included in an appendix attached to the report.

For the first time, the report also addressed NG 9-1-1. Forty-four entities indicated that their 9-1-1 funding mechanism allows for distribution of 9-1-1 funds for the implementation of NG 9-1-1. Five states reported that their funding mechanism doesn’t allow for 9-1-1 funds to be used for NG 9-1-1 implementation, and 10 states didn’t respond.

Twenty-four states used 9-1-1 funding for NG 9-1-1 during 2012, spending about $97.4 million total.

The FCC also requested public comment on the report, including comments on the following:

• What conclusions can be drawn from the information submitted by respondents regarding the sufficiency of funding resources directed to the development and deployment of NG 9-11 services?

• Based on respondents’ filings, are 9-1-1 and E9-1-1 funds being used to deploy NG 9-1-1 systems and capabilities in a logical and sustainable fashion to ensure NG 9-1-1 can meet the public’s expectations for enhanced emergency response?

• Are NG 9-1-1 systems being deployed consistently across the nation?

• How can the FCC improve its data collection to better capture the state of expenditures on NG 9-1-1 systems by state and other jurisdictions?

• Comments on the collection and distribution of 9-1-1/E9-1-1 fees and charges in the non-responding jurisdictions.

The commission intends to submit information about received comment to Congress no later than concurrently with next year’s 9-1-1 fee report. Comments are due Feb. 24, and reply comments are due March 25.

The report is available here.

Your comments are welcome, click here.

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