Donny Jackson

Urgent Communications

Donny Jackson is editor of Urgent Communications magazine. Before joining UC in 2002, he covered telecommunications for four years as a freelance writer and as news editor for Telephony magazine. Prior to that, he worked for suburban newspapers in the Dallas area, serving as editor-in-chief for the Irving News and the Las Colinas Business News.

MARCS on schedule for P25 upgrade to be operational in Q1 2015
Work on a statewide P25 deployment in Ohio is progressing as scheduled, which means the system should be operational during the first quarter of next year, according to Darryl Anderson, program manager for Ohio’s Multi-Agency Radio Communications System (MARCS).
Sound Off: Steve Elias of BAYCOM talks about RF-IT convergence
Steve Elias, owner of BAYCOM in Green Bay, Wis., shares his ideas about RF and IT convergence in modern communications—as well the impact this trend has had on personnel and training within his company—during this conversation with IWCE’s Urgent Communications Editor Donny Jackson.
USMSS considers offering self-insurance option to members
USMSS, the largest association of Motorola Solutions service partners, will research the possibility of establishing a self-insurance group in an effort to help its members lower healthcare-related costs, according to the organization’s executive director.
House Democrats call for investigation of anti-competitive allegations against Motorola Solutions
Three key House Democrats ask U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Inspector General (IG) John Roth to investigate allegations that Motorola Solutions won multiple contracts for public-safety LMR systems funded with federal grants that were not bid competitively or did not promote interoperability with other vendors.
Voxer intros ‘Walkie Talkie’ push-to-talk mode on smart devices for enterprise use
Multimedia-messaging application company Voxer today announced the availability of “Walkie Talkie” mode for Voxer Business users that is designed to transform smart iOS and Android devices into push-to-talk (PTT) devices for live communications via IP connectivity.
Court rules that federal government owns Fitzgerald e-mails about FirstNet; appeal ‘highly unlikely’ 3
FirstNet-related emails from Paul Fitzgerald—a FirstNet board member and the elected sheriff of Story County, Iowa—that were sent and received from his Story County e-mail account are the property of federal government and cannot be released to the public by the county, according to a federal court ruling.
FirstNet to begin first state-consultation meeting on July 31
FirstNet is scheduled to conduct its first formal in-person, state-consultation meeting regarding a public-safety broadband network when it convenes with representatives from the state of Maryland beginning on July 31.
PSCR panel, attendees tackle controversial local-control aspect of proposed FirstNet LTE system 3
FirstNet officials have promised that its public-safety LTE system will include local control, but first-responder representatives need to do a lot of work to determine how agencies access the broadband network and who will be given priority during times of network congestion, according to panelists and attendees of a PSCR session on the subject.
LA-RICS asks FCC for ‘immediate action’ on waiver request for 700 MHz reserve narrowband channels
An official for the Los Angeles Regional Interoperable Communications System (LA-RICS) has requested that the FCC take “immediate action” on a longstanding LA-RICS waiver request to use 700 MHz reserve channels for its new P25 network to prevent “substantial delays” and “significant costs” in the deployment of the LMR system.
Location accuracy for 911 hampered by migration from traditional telephony wireline services
Technology changes may be helping consumers find affordable alternatives to traditional landline telephony service, but the choices often represent a step backward in providing critical location information when a caller seeks emergency assistance from 911, according to panelists speaking at the recent NENA show in Nashville, Tenn.
Earliest state plans for FirstNet could be ready in latter half of 2015, FirstNet official says
FirstNet consultations with states and territories are expected to take more than a year, during which time answers to questions regarding eligible users, partnerships, 911 coordination and funding models will be sought, according to panel at the NENA conference.
Pennsylvania PSAPs share resources virtually by leveraging next-gen 911 solution from Cassidian Communications
A group of Pennsylvania public-safety answering points (PSAPs) are leveraging fiber connectivity and a Cassidian Communications's next-generation 911 solution to enable virtual sharing of resources, enhanced functionality and cost savings--"all the benefits of consolidation, but you still get to keep your PSAP open," according to the consultant that helped lead the project.
NICE Systems to highlight text-to-911 logging solution at NENA conference
NICE Systems will showcase its new text-to-911 logging solution at the 2014 National Emergency Number Association (NENA) conference and exposition, which will open its exhibit floor today at the Music City Center.
PSCR attendees debate LMR plans in the face of progress toward mission-critical voice over LTE
Standards for mission-critical push-to-talk functionality on an LTE network are scheduled to be completed in less than two years. Panelists and attendees at the PSCR stakeholders conference discussed whether the timeline should impact potential investments in LMR systems.

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