• APCO Makes the Case Against Opting-Out
  • June 7, 2017 | Author: Albert J. Catalano
  • Law Firm: Keller and Heckman LLP - Washington Office
  • Last week, the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO) released a blog post laying out the benefits of opting-in to the FirstNet plan. The blog criticized vendors and consultants for making false promises in attempting to encourage states to opt-out. These “false promises” include the notion that states can financially benefit from opting-out. The blog quashes this, explaining that law prevents states from using revenue for anything other than the public safety network. 

    The FCC hopes to finalize its rules for evaluating interoperability of alternative state plans before FirstNet introduces state plans. FirstNet plans to deliver initial state plans by mid-June and finalize these plans by the end of September (and possibly sooner for those states wanting an early opt-in). After receiving FirstNet’s state plan, governors will have 90 days to decide whether to opt-out of allowing AT&T to buildout and maintain their RAN and another 180 days for states to complete RFPs and submit alternative plans for FCC approval.