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Public Safety

NTIA’s Office of Public Safety Communications (OPSC) oversees the implementation of NTIA’s responsibilities under the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012. It also supports the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet Authority) with support functions for its efforts to deploy, operate, and maintain the nationwide public safety broadband network.

NTIA has statutory and delegated responsibilities related to the FirstNet Authority.  Under the enabling statute, the NTIA Assistant Secretary must approve all fees collected by the FirstNet Authority.  As part of the 25-year partnership contract with AT&T to deploy and operate the Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network, the FirstNet Authority receives an annual sustainability fee from AT&T that must be approved by NTIA. 

Additionally, the FirstNet Authority has a Board composed of 15 members, of which three are permanent positions held by Executive Branch cabinet officials and 12 are non-permanent members appointed by the Secretary of Commerce for three-year terms.  The Secretary also appoints a Board Chair from the group of 12 non-permanent members.  NTIA supports the Secretary with the recruitment, vetting, and recommendations for the 12 non-permanent Board seats.   

In addition to carrying out its responsibilities under the Act, NTIA is engaged in variety of other activities to support the 9-1-1 community:

NTIA provides best practices to 9-1-1 officials regarding the implementation of Next Generation 9-1-1 (NG9-1-1).

Engage with other Federal partners across the Executive Branch on issues related to NG9-1-1 in support of the public safety community.

Starting in 2009 through 2022, NTIA and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) awarded two separate rounds of grants to the States, U.S. territories, and tribes to improve 9-1-1 services with enhanced and next-generation technologies.

OPSC Leadership Directory

Associate Administrator: Mike Dame (Acting)


Office of Public Safety Communications
National Telecommunications & Information Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce
1401 Constitution Ave., N.W., Room 4078
Washington, DC  20230
Phone: (202) 482-5802

Related content

NTIA Honors the Telecommunicators that Power America’s 911 System

April 13, 2021

Every day, across our country, Americans facing emergencies contact 911 with the expectation that their call will be heard and someone will be dispatched quickly to render aid. The professional public safety telecommunicators that keep our 911 system running are the lifeline between the public and our first responders. 

This week, April 11 to 17, is recognized as National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week, and NTIA is proud to honor and thank the thousands of telecommunicators across the nation who answer the call of service to help their fellow Americans when they are most in need.

Public safety telecommunicators field more than 240 million calls each year, streamlining emergency responses and serving as a calming voice as they ensure that the day’s crises and challenges are met. This year, we also recognize that emergency call centers have been operating under pandemic-related restrictions, with depleted staff, while continuing to serve the many people affected by COVID-19.

Notice of Extension of Time for Recruitment of FirstNet Board Members

March 31, 2021

On March 4, 2021, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) published a notice seeking expressions of interest in an appointment to the Board of the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet Authority). The notice established a deadline of April 5, 2021, for the transmittal of expressions of interest. This notice extends the period for submission of expressions of interest until April 15, 2021.

Notice of Recruitment of FirstNet Board Members

March 04, 2021

NTIA) issues this Notice to initiate the annual process to seek expressions of interest from individuals who would like to serve on the Board of the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet Authority Board or Board). The terms of 11 of the 12 non-permanent members to the FirstNet Authority Board will be available for appointment and reappointment in 2021.

To be considered for the calendar year 2021 appointments, expressions of interest must be electronically transmitted on or before April 5, 2021.

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