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Public Safety Communications System

Objective

Implement the Nebraska statewide radio system and migrate state law enforcement and other state agencies onto the system. Create the system user group to educate, train and develop best practices for agencies using the system. Develop interoperability options for local agencies to enable cost-effective, functional, and reliable communications between state, local and public power agencies.


Description

The OCIO-Network Services Public Safety team coordinates project coordination, technical planning, and management of the Nebraska statewide radio system. This is in partnership with the Nebraska Public Power District, an equal owner and operator of the system. OCIO and NPPD jointly coordinate regular system user group meetings, and hold ongoing meetings with the system operating group concerning management, policies, and infrastructure planning.

State agencies are actively using the system for their communications while OCIO is coordinating with the agencies on decommissioning their old systems. Coverage, voice clarity, and ease of use have improved dramatically with the new system. OCIO and NPPD have ongoing discussions with local agencies and public power districts interested in participation on the system. OCIO is the lead contact for public safety agencies, while NPPD is the lead contact for utilities.

A System Operating Agreement outlines the management and operational practices OCIO and NPPD are developing in support of the OCIO-NPPD interlocal agreement to jointly own, operate and maintain the statewide radio system. The system operating group manages the system and coordinates the system user group to address ongoing system issues and improvements.

Next steps involve these major milestones:

  • Complete the System Operating Agreement
  • Complete the system policy, system management, and user guide documents
  • Determine support resources needed from the system vendor (Motorola)
  • Complete steps and resolve any outstanding issues to develop the system acceptance test plan to complete system acceptance.
  • Continue developing planning steps to ensure successful migration of new user agencies.

Benefits

The system plan brings state agencies and NPPD on a single technology platform. The system improves radio coverage, technology, and capacity. The infrastructure is able to grow as additional agencies migrate to the system. The system is leverages existing towers, network and personnel resources to the greatest degree feasible. Benefits of the system include:

Reduces multiple agency systems to a consolidated shared infrastructure;

  • Provides the ability for the State Patrol and other agencies to be interoperable; where old state systems lacked the necessary capacity and technology;
  • Leverages existing state, local, and utility tower assets;
  • Reduces the cost of the initial system through partnering with the state's largest utility provider;
  • Enables participation opportunities for any public safety or public utility to use the system.

Current Action Items (2012-2014)

1. CIO-Network Services is continuing to jointly develop with NPPD the operational and management aspects of the system.

Refer to the Statewide Technology Plan for further information.