SB 966 - The act modifies provisions pertaining to enhanced 911 services.
Under current law, the Wireless Service Provider Enhanced 911 Advisory Board consists of 8 members. The act reduces the number to 7 by removing the 3 members representing wireless service providers, reducing from 3 to 2 the representatives of public safety answering point organizations (PSAPs), adding a member appointed by the Governor, and adding 2 representatives of 911-affiliated organizations. It modifies the PSAP representation by requiring one member to represent rural PSAPs and one member to represent urban PSAPs.
The act adds duties for the Wireless Service Provider Enhanced 911 Advisory Board: setting and enforcing enhanced 911 training requirements, reviewing annual reports submitted by PSAPs, studying the feasibility of PSAP consolidation, and reviewing and approving the awarding of grants to PSAPs.
The act creates the Telecommunicator Standards and Training Fund, which will receive 10% of the funds deposited into the existing Enhanced 911 Service Fund. The funding will be used for enhanced 911 training.
Under current law, the Office of Administration is authorized to collect a fee per cell phone from wireless service providers. The act repeals this authority and instead allows the Public Service Commission (PSC) to assess the charge, to be set at not less than 25 cents or more than $1 per cell phone. Payments by wireless service providers shall be made monthly to the Department of Revenue, which are deposited to the credit of the Enhanced 911 Fund. The act transfers the authority to administer the Enhanced 911 Fund from the Office of Administration to the Universal Service Board. The act modifies the distribution of the funding from the Enhanced 911 Fund such that: 60% of the funds must be distributed to PSAPs based on the number of cell phones in their jurisdiction; 39% of the funds are to be used for grants, next generation 911, and to assist PSAPs with heavy seasonal call volume; and 1% of the funds may be retained by the Universal Service Board for administration.
PSAPs must submit an annual report to the Universal Service Board that lists employee information, call volume, and certain certification for medical dispatch agencies.
Under current law, the Office of Administration must review the funding distribution from the Enhanced 911 Fund and make any necessary adjustments to the fee. The act changes this authority to the PSC.
Counties with multiple PSAPs must develop a plan to consolidate using either physical consolidation or virtual consolidation. Second and third-class counties using physical consolidation must consolidate by 75% in 10 years. First-class and charter counties using physical consolidation must consolidate by 50% in 10 years. Counties that choose to virtually consolidate must show what equipment will be consolidated and the method of connectivity to be used between PSAPs. Consolidation plans must be developed before any such PSAPs will be eligible to receive funding from the Enhanced 911 Fund.
The act removes the requirement that the voters must approve the imposition of the fee on wireless service providers.