North Carolina State Highway Patrol Gets 800 MHz Waiver
Wednesday, March 08, 2017 | Comments

The FCC granted a request by the North Carolina State Highway Patrol for a waiver of the freeze on 800 MHz intercategory sharing to allow it to license a business/industrial/land transportation (B/ILT) channel for public-safety communications.

The commission requested comment on the request in December.

The patrol operates a trunked radio system throughout the state serving its highway patrol operations on numerous 800 MHz frequencies. The highway patrol asked the FCC to modify its private LMR license call sign WQTA652 by adding a new 800 MHz channel to its base station located on Hibriten Mountain in Caldwell County. The agency asked to license a channel from the B/ILT pool to increase the capacity of its base station.

FCC rules permit an entity to license a channel outside its pool category through inter-category sharing if the entity demonstrates that no channels in its pool category are available for use. The commission placed a freeze, however, on inter-category sharing in 1995.

Because the underlying purpose of the freeze was to protect the public-safety pool channels against intercategory sharing applications from SMR applicants, the commission said that applying the freeze to the highway patrol’s application would not serve the purpose of the freeze. The FCC said that granting North Carolina Highway Patrol’s application would further the public interest by allowing the agency to return its Hibriten Mountain site to “normal operations” to provide “more efficient dispatching” to the public-safety agencies that use its site for their radio communications.

The full order is here.

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