LA-RICS reaches agreement with AT&T on transfer of region’s public-safety LTE network for FirstNet

Los Angeles Regional Interoperable Communications System (LA-RICS) board members are scheduled to vote today on a proposed agreement that would transfer the LA-RICS public-safety LTE assets to AT&T, so they can be integrated into the FirstNet system, if California Gov. Jerry Brown makes an “opt-in” decision.

Los Angeles Regional Interoperable Communications System (LA-RICS) board members are scheduled to vote today on a proposed agreement that would transfer the LA-RICS public-safety LTE assets to AT&T, so they can be integrated into the FirstNet system, if California Gov. Jerry Brown makes an “opt-in” decision.

Terms of the proposed agreement call for AT&T—FirstNet’s contractor to build and maintain the nationwide public-safety broadband network (NPSBN)—to pay LA-RICS $6 million for the regional authority’s existing public-safety LTE assets and another $6 million for infrastructure associated with a proposed network expansion. Expected to close in March or April, the proposed deal also calls for AT&T to provide LA-RICS as many as 3,300 replacement routers, SIMs and devices and $2.5 million in services to deploy the routers, SIMs and devices.

“LA-RICS leadership and technical engineers worked for weeks with AT&T leadership and engineers to put together an agreement that benefits all parties and greatly benefits the region’s ability to properly serve the 11 million residents of LA County, especially during a major emergency or disaster,” LA-RICS Executive Director Scott Edson said in a prepared statement.

AT&T would receive LA-RICS assets deployed at 75 public-safety-grade sites—13 of which are cell-on-wheels (COW) sites—and any spare equipment held by LA-RICS, according to the proposed agreement.

Before the proposed agreement can be executed, it must be approved by the LA-RICS board tomorrow and California Jerry Brown must make an “opt-in” FirstNet decision, which would mean that AT&T would build the LTE radio access network (RAN) in the state. In addition, the deal would have to be approved by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and the (NOAA) grants office—administrators of the federal grant used to fund deployment of the LA-RICS system.

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