NENA CEO Urges Senators to Fully Fund NG 9-1-1
Friday, September 09, 2022 | Comments

In a letter, National Emergency Number Association (NENA) CEO Brian Fontes called upon the leaders of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation to fully fund the transition to next-generation 9-1-1 (NG 9-1-1).

“The Government Accountability Office estimates that each year, Americans make approximately 240 million 9-1-1 calls, with 80% of those calls made from wireless devices,” the letter said. “Notwithstanding the rise of wireless connectivity, many public-safety answering points continue to use legacy telephone technologies that are limited to voice calls, preventing callers from sending multimedia and not providing the same level of service consumer technologies offer. We cannot wait any longer to modernize America’s outdated 9-1-1 infrastructure.”

Fontes asked that FCC auction proceeds be used to fully fund the NG 9-1-1 transition with several transition priorities including:
• That rural, suburban, urban and tribal communities can receive, process and respond to NG 9-1-1 calls;
• The transition from existing legacy systems to NG 9-1-1 technology will be overseen by 9-1-1 professionals and experts;
• The 9-1-1 Implementation and Coordination Office, which is a joint effort between the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), will be involved in the decision-making process; and
• The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) within the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will continue to ensure the operability of the U.S. emergency communication system during the NG 9-1-1 transition.

“NG 9-1-1 technology will provide our country’s field responders with unprecedented situational awareness to more effectively help those during an emergency,” the letter said. “Thank you for supporting this urgent and important initiative. NENA looks forward to working with you and your staff in the migration from last century 9-1-1 legacy systems to 21st century NG 9-1-1.”

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