PSST gets 10 applicants for agent position
Ten firms have applied to serve as the agent/advisor of the Public Safety Spectrum Trust (PSST), a new organization that hopes to be named as the national licensee overseeing public safety’s interest in the nationwide 700 MHz broadband network approved by the network this week.
After releasing a request for proposals (RFP) for the position on July 9, 11 firms expressed their intent to apply for the post. With the exception of one group that cited difficulty meeting the quick application timeline, all others submitted proposals, said Alan Caldwell, secretary-treasurer of the PSST.
While the PSST is not divulging the names of the organizations vying for the agent/advisor role, Cyren Call Communications—the organization led by former Nextel co-founder Morgan O’Brien that first proposed a 700 MHz public-private partnership last year—has acknowledged that it is one of the bidders. Given the tight timelines and the fact that the agent/advisor job only will exist if the FCC selects the PSST as the national public-safety licensee, Caldwell said the level of response is encouraging.
“We didn’t know what to expect,” Caldwell said of the PSS. “Quite frankly, we’re pleased with the 10 we’ve got … all are substantial bids by organizations that belong.”
Although the FCC this week voted to approve an order creating a public-private partnership with a national public-safety licensee, the process for designating the licensee was not detailed. Most industry observers believe the PSST is a likely candidate for this role, because it is a non-profit entity supported by nine public-safety organizations.
Caldwell said PSST officials are anxious for the FCC order to be published, so they can prepare for the selection process.
“We think the organization that we have established meets the criteria, and we hope the FCC selects us,” Caldwell said.