ROCKEFELLER, HUTCHISON DELIVER BIPARTISAN D-BLOCK ALLOCATION BILL
PUBLIC SAFETY’S TOP PRIORITY APPROVED ON AN OVERWHELMING 21-4 VOTE
PSA APPLAUDS COMMITTEE & LEADERS FOR THEIR HARD WORK; URGES MAJORITY LEADER REID & REPUBLICAN LEADER MCCONNELL TO MOVE S.911 TO THE FLOOR NOW
WASHINGTON, D.C. – June 8, 2011 – The Public Safety Alliance (PSA) today congratulates the overwhelming majority of Republican and Democratic members on the Senate Commerce Committee for working together in passage of S.911 supporting the nation’s first responders’ top priority communications issue. Chairman Jay Rockefeller and Ranking Member Kay Bailey Hutchison introduced S.911: Public Safety Spectrum and Wireless Innovation Act of 2011 today. This significant development follows several months of hard work, compromise and negotiation, and is consistent with public safety’s top priority to gain D-block allocation and federal funding necessary to realize a nationwide, interoperable public safety broadband network.
“On behalf of the more than 2 million first responders nationwide, the Public Safety Alliance congratulates Chairman Rockefeller, Ranking Member Hutchison and the vast majority of Committee Members for their support and hard work to in taking this “massive step” toward greatly improving the public’s safety,” said PSA spokesman Deputy Chief Charles Dowd, Commander of the Communications Division of the City of New York Police Department. “As Chairman Rockefeller said today, this is a deeply and profoundly emotional step, and we truly appreciate that it was done with integrity, with substance, and passed by a wide margin on a bipartisan basis.
Dowd continued, “Most of the members of this committee demonstrated that they believe the safety of the American people is what’s most important in this debate, and we look forward to Senators Reid and McConnell taking this legislation to the Senate floor and moving the full Senate to quickly pass it and get it to the President’s desk for signature before the 10th Anniversary of 9/11. It is the least we can do to honor those who serve the American people every day and for the many men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice keeping our country safe.”
Nearly 10 years ago, police, firefighters and EMS workers lost their lives because of inadequate public safety communications networks during the 9/11 terrorist attacks. In March, the chairmen of the 9/11 Commission announced their support for the policy that would finally advance the allocation of the D Block spectrum to public safety – a key 9/11 Commission Report recommendation. For more information on a Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network, visit www.psafirst.org.