Meeting Minutes

Region 19 700 MHz Committee


Tuesday, December 10, 2013


Rhode Island Dept. of Transportation

360 Lincoln Ave

Warwick, Rhode Island


Weather conditions caused the meeting to be slightly delayed. Mr. Jerry Zarwanski of CT chaired the meeting.  The meeting was opened at 10:22 AM. Chairman Zarwarnski noted that a Quorum of committee members was present for this meeting. An agenda and minutes to the previous meeting were emailed to all committee members prior to the meeting and copies were also available for those attending the meeting. Several members called in on the telephone conference bridge.


Attendees participating by Conference Bridge:

Steve Brown – CT

George Carbonell - CT

Scott Wright - CT

Steve Mallory - ME

Rich Andreano - DHS Region I Coordinator


Agenda Item 1:  Approval of Minutes


A copy of the minutes from the last meeting was available to attendees.  Motion to approve the minutes, as printed, Mr. Steve Verbil. Seconded by Mr. Lee Savary and approved by unanimous voice vote.


Agenda Item 2: State System Updates


Connecticut: Mr. Verbil updated the attendees regarding the kick off of the CT  NG911 system. The system contains 104 PSAPs and an 18 month installation process is expected.


Rhode Island:  Mr. Brian Glancy reported the State is continuing to search for and looking to hire a  RI SWIC. RI Emergency Management is in the process of installing more sites to expand the statewide 700 MHz communications system.


Massachusetts: Mr. John Ruggeiro provided an update for the statewide 700 MHz system. Contractors are installing additional sites in the Western section of the State.  A CAD upgrade is also moving forward including a partnership formed with CT for 911/CAD configurations.




New Hampshire:  Mr. Jim Kowalik provided a final update on the State of New Hampshire’s BTOP NHSafeNet IP Microwave and Fiber Optic program. The project has been completed, has been accepted by the State and is operational. NH DOT Dave Chase and Lee Savary provided and update of the DOT's statewide intrastate corridor communications systems.  NH DOT has provided comments to the FCC regarding the proposed language change which would  allow 4.9 GHz systems to be installed as  interconnect backhaul. NH DOT does not agree with the proposal as presented.


Maine: No Report.


Vermont:  No Report.


Agenda Item 3: FCC 700 MHz and FIRSTNET Broadband Legislation


Chairman Zarwanski reiterated the pending FCC requirement for states holding 700MHz “State Licenses” to provide or be prepared to provide “substantial service” to one-third of their population or territory by June 13, 2014 and two-third of their population or territory by June 13, 2019. If a state licensee fails to meet any condition of the grant, the state license is modified automatically to the frequencies and geographic areas where the state certifies that it is providing substantial service. The FCC indicated that the recovered “State License” spectrum will revert to 700MHz “General Use” spectrum.


Chairman Zarwanski noted that Connecticut has finished its 700 MHz state license build out and it will send notification of compliance to the FCC soon.


Chairman Zarwanski provided an update on the FCC First Responder Network Authority (FIRSTNET) documentation, grant funding available to each state for FIRSTNET planning and 700 MHz D block actions. Mr. Zarwanski advised more states have received their initial planning funds and other requests may still be pending. FIRSTNET outreach workshops continue to be held. The FIRSTNET consortium is focusing on the development of RFI proposals and technology which will support public safety applications in the FIRSTNET broadband network.


Agenda Item 4:


Agenda item #4 was inadvertently left off of the Agenda. The Agenda numbering went from 3 to 5.


Agenda Item 5: Application Engineering


Mr. Zarwanski updated the attendees regarding the debate over which engineering software platform would best serve Region 19. Debate continues with adjacent state Region 8 and 30 with all regions currently receiving coordination site data in the form of xls spreadsheet or on a CSV comma delimited spreadsheet. Chairman Zarwanski advised the committee that he is next interested in the Compass Software package to make additional comparisons of common data formatting. The goal remains to find common formats that can be imported into ATDI Spectrum E software application, however, the Region 19 bylaws still requests data in Comstudy format.


Attendees were advised that the Region 19 Technical Subcommittee continues to meet on a Thursday of each month. The sub-committee reviews technical aspects of applications and make recommendations for modifications to the site parameters as may be necessary for the proposed use to meet Region 19 specifications.


Agenda Item 6: Region 19 Plan/Applications


Mr. Zarwanski noted the CT DESSP applications for window 17 and 18 continues to move slowly forward.  CT DESSP window 17 application has Region 30 Concurrence but Region 8 still has issues with Monmouth, NJ site. CT DESSP window 18 2nd filing application given go ahead for concurrence with Region 8 by Jim Kowalik, NH and Brian Glancy, RI.



Agenda Item 7: Region 8 and 30 700MHz Concurrence Applications


Mr. Zarwanski announced there is no Region 8 or 30 700 MHz applications pending for committee review at this time.



Agenda Item 8: National Regional Planning Committee (NRPC)


The NRPC meets by conference call every third Thursday of each month.


The committee continued discussion regarding issues with the spreadsheet formats that can be used to file application and coverage studies. The best way to solve the problem would be for the NRPC to support acquisition of multiple on-line engineering platforms and make access available for RPC’s that need it to do adjacent state coordination. It was noted that the NRPC still does not have travel or meeting support funding available for the RPC committees.


Agenda Item 9: 4.9 GHz


Chairman Zarwanski advised attendees that, as discussed at previous RPC meetings, it appears that the FIRSTNET project is still considering using 4.9 GHz for interconnect backhaul. Entities using 4.9 GHz should file proper notification of use of the 4.9 GHz frequencies to the Chairman as required by the Region 19 4.9GHz plan to make sure their use is noted.


NH DOT has provided comments to the FCC regarding the proposed language change which would  allow 4.9 GHz systems to be installed as  interconnect backhaul. NH DOT does not agree with the proposal as presented.


New Business


A. 2014 Meeting Dates and Location. The next meeting will be held at the Connecticut Fire Academy Training Center in South Windsor, CT on March 11, 2014. The rotation for the next few meetings will be CT, NH, MA, and VT.


B. Membership. Chairman Zarwanski reviewed the current membership of the 700 MHz committee. He noted that there are currently 11 open slots for new members. A new SWIC for the State of New Hampshire, Mr. John Stevens  has been hired.  A letter to Chairman Zarwanski identify the NH SWIC will be sent .


With no further comments or new business, Mr. Jim Kowalik motioned for adjournment.  Mr. Steve Verbil seconded the motion. All members voted unanimously to adjourn at 11:12 AM



Submitted - Jim Kowalik - Secretary