GovTrack’s Bill Summary
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Library of Congress Summary
The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.
Broadband for First Responders Act of 2011 - Amends the Communications Act of 1934 to increase the electromagnetic spectrum allocation for public safety services by 10 megahertz and reduce such allocation for commercial use by the same amount.
Directs the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to:
(1) allocate the paired electromagnetic spectrum bands of 758-763 megahertz and 788-793 megahertz (referred to as D Block) for public safety broadband communications and license such paired bands to public safety;
(2) establish rules to permit a public safety broadband licensee to authorize public safety service providers to construct and operate a wireless public safety broadband network in the licensee's spectrum if such authorization would expedite public safety broadband communications;
(3) require that any wireless public safety broadband network be fully interoperable, provide for user roaming, be disaster survivable, have the appropriate level of cyber security, and be consistent with the Statewide Interoperable Communications Plans and the National Emergency Communications Plan;
(4) establish regulations to authorize the shared use of the public safety broadband spectrum and network infrastructure by entities that are not defined as public safety services;
(5) establish regulations to allow use of the public safety broadband spectrum by emergency response providers; and
(6) develop a public safety agency statement of requirements that enables nationwide interoperability and roaming across any communications system using public safety broadband spectrum.
Specifies organizations that shall be included in the Board of Directors of the Public Safety Broadband Licensee. Establishes in the Treasury:
(1) the Public Safety Interoperable Broadband Network Construction Fund, and
(2) the Public Safety Interoperable Broadband Network Maintenance and Operation Fund. Directs the Secretary of Commerce to:
(1) establish a grant program to assist public safety entities to establish a nationwide public safety interoperable broadband network in the 700 megahertz band, and
(2) administer a program through which not more than 50% of maintenance and operational expenses associated with the public safety interoperable broadband network may be reimbursed from the Maintenance and Operation Fund. Directs:
(1) the Assistant Secretary of Commerce to reallocate for commercial use electromagnetic spectrum at 1755-1780 megahertz, and
(2) the FCC, within 18 months after enactment of this Act, to establish rules for pairing electromagnetic spectrum bands at 1755-1780 megahertz and 2155-2180 megahertz, inclusive, and auction the licenses for such paired spectrum.
Requires each public safety entity, within 8 years, to migrate from a specified range of radio spectrum to an alternative radio spectrum that is licensed to public safety services in the 700 and 800 megahertz bands.
Directs each federal law enforcement agency, within 10 years, to move all noncommercial network communications to spectrum in such bands.
Directs the FCC to auction, through an appropriate competitive bidding system, certain paired electromagnetic spectrum bands recovered from public safety entities under a specified FCC migration plan.
Extends the FCC's authority to grant a license or permit under applicable competitive bidding provisions to September 30, 2020.
House Republican Conference Summary
The summary below was written by the House Republican Conference, which is the caucus of Republicans in the House of Representatives.
No summary available.
House Democratic Caucus Summary
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