Meeting Minutes

New England Region 19 700 MHz

Technical Advisory Committee Meeting


Tuesday, June 10, 2014


NH Department of Safety

33 Hazen Drive

Concord, New Hampshire 03301


Mr. Jerry Zarwanski of CT chaired the meeting.  The meeting was opened at 10:02 AM. 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. Chairman Zarwarnski noted that a Quorum of committee members was present for this meeting. Several members called in on the telephone conference bridge.


Attendees participating by Conference Bridge:

Ed Luczkow - CT

Robert DiBella – CT

Scott Wright - CT

Steve Mallory – ME


Vice Chairman Steve Verbil noted for the attendees that Mr. Paul Leary of NH DRED was retiring from state service and this would be his last official committee attendance. Mr. Verbil went on to thank Mr. Leary for his many years of participation in the technical advisory committee and wished him well. Mr. Leary responded by indicating that he may be attending additional meetings as the past president of the FCCA and planned to stay as involved as possible.


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 by Mr. Otto, seconded by Mr. Brown and approved by unanimous voice vote.


Agenda Item 2: State System Updates


Connecticut: Mr. Verbil provided an update of the State of Connecticut DESPP PSDN statewide system. The PSDN system has been placed in service at 105 PSAP locations. A BTOP project grant has allowed the addition of 450 additional site locations into the system. An additional 90 PSAPs will be added as part of NG911. By 2016, the system will be comprised of an all-IP based network with a mix of Microwave and Fiber interconnects.


Rhode Island:  No Report.

Massachusetts: Mr. John Ruggeiro reported that there have been no major changes to the statewide public safety network system.


New Hampshire:  Mr. Jim Kowalik provided a further update on the State of New Hampshire’s BTOP NHSafeNet IP Microwave and Fiber Optic program. The core IP microwave network has been placed in full operation. Stakeholders will meet to finalize the Core IP microwave network fault management project. The NH Dept of Safety will be the primary stakeholder for management of the BTOP core network.


Maine: Steve Mallory reported that State of Maine MSCommNet system is being prepared for cutover in the next few weeks.


Vermont:  No Report.


Region 1 SWIC Coordinator Update:  Mr. Andreano provided continuous updates of the regional interoperability channel matrix which will be forwarded to NE Region SWIC’s and Chairman Zarwanski to make available to committee members.


Mr. Andreano advised that he will be attending a DHS cross border interoperability forum in Portland, Maine on June 26. The purpose for the meeting is to discuss potential use of the VCALL and other designated interoperability channels and to provide justifications for more interoperability coordination along the northern US border with Canadian officials. DHS will also do research to create a list of the proper Canadian authorities to invite to follow up cross-border meetings to continue the process.


Agenda Item 3: FCC Update


Chairman Zarwanski provided latest updates regarding the passing of the FCC requirement for states holding 700 MHz “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. The status of the Region 19 states was presented. Filing were CT and MA, NH is planning to file and VT, ME, and RI filing status is unknown . Discussion occurred regarding the potential use of the 700 MHz state frequencies.


Chairman Zarwanski provided an update on the FCC First Responder Network Authority (FIRSTNET) activity. A new FIRSTNET web site has been created and has updated information for public safety entities. Mr. Verbil provided and update regarding the last FIRSTNET Board meeting which he attended in Denver, CO. He described a more open meeting which allowed more attendees to sit in the board meetings. FIRSTNET authority is moving forward with FIRSTNET engineering and members are deeply involved in on air testing. Mr. Verbil recounted some technical parameters being studied related to wide area mobile coverage and in-building portable coverage requirements.


Mr. Verbil advised that the FIRSTNET liaison office, headed by Mr. William Casey, has begun holding state consultation meetings. It was noted that the LTE standard protocol will be used and VOLTE voice integration may become available in the FIRSTNET system in the next few years if the development process continues to move forward at its current rate.


Agenda Item 4: Application Engineering


A. Comstudy vs Spectrum E.  Mr. Zarwanski updated the attendees regarding the debate over which engineering software platform would best serve Region 19, 30, and 8.


Chairman Zarwanski advised the committee that he is interested in acquiring Radio Soft Compass Software package to make additional comparisons of common data formatting.

John Ruggeiro is developing a CSV spreadsheet that may be made available on the Region 19 website to allow applicants to enter their data in the CSV format. Region 19 coordinators can then import the spreadsheet(s) into Spectrum E directly.


B. Technical Subcommittee. The Region 19 RPC Technical Subcommittee meetings are held on a monthly basis. The committee work is caught up and border region concurrences are being handled within the recommended time frames. The NRPC technical subcommittee, headed by Joe Yurman of NY, continues to examine the use of a common software program and recommends test (calibration) sites for each state which will allow coordinators to compare the applicants engineering software results to the test site. Discussion from floor regarding a subcommittee to review and recommend changes to the Region 19 plan to potentially implement the Spectrum E software platform for future committee use.  A motion was put forth by Mr. Kowalik to create a subcommittee to examine the NE Region 19 700 MHz application procedures, technical parameters, and software packages. Seconded by George Carbonnell. Motion was approved by unanimous voice vote. Chairman Zarwarnski appointed Jim Kowalik to be the chair of the sub-committee, with other committee members comprised of one member from each Region 19 state and existing members of the technical subcommittee. The committee make up will be further developed at the next Region 19 meeting. Discussion will include the need for some form of funding to support acquisition of the software package and potential monthly fees. The next meeting of the technical subcommittee is scheduled for July 10 at 8 AM.


C. CAPRAD. Further discussion regarding the need to update the CAPRAD 700 MHZ data. Jim Kowalik and George Carbonnell are continuing to enter updated data as time permits. CAPRAD use by Region 19 members will be part of the agenda for the 700 MHz plan review committee. Discussion from floor regarding future use of the CAPRAD sort based on the fact that CAPRAD database sort was originally intended as a five year tool and the region needs to determine how sorts and frequency allocations will be provided to members.


Agenda Item 5: Region 19 Plan/Applications


Mr. Zarwanski noted that there are currently no Region 19 application filings to discuss at this time.  

Agenda Item 6: Region 8 and 30 700 MHz Concurrence Applications


Mr. Zarwanski announced that Region 8 and 30 concurrence requests from Suffolk, NY, Westchester, NY, and Nassau County, NY counties are now complete. The Region 19 Technical Subcommittee worked closely with Region 8 technical committee to complete the interference studies and provide concurrences. There are no further Region 8 700 MHz concurrence applications at this time.



Agenda Item 7: National Regional Planning Committee (NRPC)


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


The committee continues monthly discussion regarding use of various engineering software platforms by multiple regions across the nation. The next conference call meeting is scheduled for August 21 at 3 PM.


Agenda Item 9: 4.9 GHz


Chairman Zarwanski reiterated 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 4.9 GHz Plan to make sure their use is noted. Region 19 Chairman Zarwarnski sent out 4.9 GHz reminder letters to all known 4.9 GHz users listed in the FCC database some time ago. Discussion from the floor regarding the proper licensing of 4.9 GHz point to point microwave transpired. Some entities do not convert their itinerant unlicensed use of 4.9 GHz to a site based 4.9 GHz call sign if the site is in place for over one year.


New Business


2014 Meeting Dates and Location: The next meeting will be held at the Massachusetts State Police headquarters in Framingham, MA on Tuesday, September 9, 2014.


Membership: Chairman Zarwanski reviewed the current membership of the 700 MHz committee. There are three new committee members for the State of Rhode Island and one from the State of New Hampshire.


Mr. Kowalik introduced Mr. John Stevens as the newly hired NH SWIC to the attendees. Mr. Stevens provided a brief personal history as well as a few words describing the SWIC charter for NH. Discussion from the floor regarding Region 19 membership allocation, service categories and adding  new members to the membership list accordingly.


With no further comments or new business, Mr. Paul Leary motioned for adjournment.  Mr. George Carbonnell seconded the motion. All members voted unanimously to adjourn at 11:35 AM


Submitted - Jim Kowalik - Secretary