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Three and only three ...

Effective Monday, March 12th, there are now three and only three public safety organizations that have the coveted FCC-certified frequency advisory committee medallion. On February 22nd, IMSA/IAFC and FCCA announced that they had joined their respective frequency coordination forces under a single organization called the Public Safety Communications Associates (PSCA). What this means is that PSCA assumes primary frequency coordination jurisdiction for those channels allocated for primary fire, emergency medical and forestry conservation licensees. APCO is the primary coordinator for channels allocated for police operations. AASHTO, the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials, has primary responsibility for those channels allocated for highway maintenance operations. All three of these entities are authorized by the FCC to provide coordination services for local government channels. And to keep things interesting, all three of these frequency coordination entities can coordinate any frequency available for public safety operations, just as long as requests for interservice concurrence and fees per channel are submitted to the coordinator with primary channel authority. In other words, PSCA can process applications seeking use of highway maintenance frequencies, just as long as AASHTO is given the opportunity to review the use of “its” channels and receives a fee for that review and approval (or disapproval) process. APCO can seek the use of a fire frequency, but must secure prior concurrence and submit fees to PSCA before the application may be certified by APCO and submitted to the FCC for processing.

There are any number of license preparation houses (EWA included), consulting firms, engineering entities, technology vendors, spectrum management software providers and wanna be coordinators in the public safety space. But do not be mistaken. Your public safety applications may be certified and submitted to the Commission by one of only three organizations certified by the FCC. These are now PSCA, AASHTO and APCO. Case closed.  

Mark Crosby | View Mark's Blog