Public Safety / FirstNet


A public safety communications initiative has been underway since 2012 to fund and govern a nationwide public safety broadband network also known as FirstNet. The goal is when natural disasters or other emergencies occur anywhere in the country, the first high-speed network dedicated to public safety will enable local, state, regional, and national emergency responders to communicate using a single network. The interoperability will incorporate wireless, fiber, cellular, and radio systems, which will solve communication challenges faced by emergency responders in different jurisdictions. FirstNet, an independent authority within the Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), is heading the national effort to implement the public safety network that will be built across the United States.

Iowa’s Initiatives

The Iowa Statewide Interoperable Communications System Board (ISICSB) is leading the FirstNet initiatives for Iowa. The board has been designated by Governor Branstad as the primary point of contact for Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network (NPSBN). The ISICSB began operation in 2007 with the goal to find the best mechanisms to get the word out and create a site as our link to the communities, organizations, offices, elected officials, PSAPs, and other stakeholders. The ICN serves as a technical management support partner to ISICSB, by gathering required asset and profile data.

6 steps from summer 2017 to fall 2017

Public Private Partnership Summit

April 6, 2017
Summit PowerPoint

August 25, 2016
Opt-in/Opt-out Process
Funding Revenue Reinvestment Provisions
Taskforce Report

Representatives of Iowa’s emergency first responders and private industry leaders gather twice a year for a summit to advance partnerships in Iowa’s broadband network and FirstNet (First Responder Network Authority). FirstNet is a federal initiative to create a nationwide public safety communications network and is the last remaining recommendation of the 9/11 Commission.

April 6, 2017 Public Private Partnership Summit Recording

August 25, 2016 Public Private Partnership Summit Recording

March 3, 2016 Public Private Partnership Summit Recording

August 13, 2015 Public Private Partnership Summit Recording

March 19, 2015 Public Private Partnership Summit Recording

Broadband Matters' Public Safety 2015 Legislative Reception

ICN hosted a reception in January 2015 for legislators and the public to learn more about their ‘Broadband Matters’ initiative and FirstNet, a future network dedicated specifically to public safety.

FirstNet Presentation

TraumaHawk Presentation

RAGBRAI Presentation

Learn about FirstNet

FirstNet has been obligated by Congress to take all actions necessary to ensure the building, deployment and operation of the nationwide public safety broadband network.