tv The Communicators CSPAN July 24, 2010 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT
and takeovers, washington democrats are poised to allow the largest tax increase in american history to take effect next year. the american people deserve to know every income tax bracket will increase on january 1, 2011. every single one. so, if this year you receive a $1,000 per child tax credit, next year you'll get just $500 per child. if you run a small business and pay 35% in federal taxes, next year you'll have to pay nearly 40%. and if you own a family farm, you'll see death taxes rise from zero to 55% in a single year. washington d.c. doesn't tax too little. washington d.c. spends too much. i don't know anybody back in indiana who thinks they pay too little in taxes. and only in washington d.c. would anyone believe that raising taxes creates jobs. the american people know we can't tax and spend and bail our way back to a growing economy.
house republicans opposed the democrats' failed stimulus bill, their national energy tax, their government takeover of health care and house republicans will oppose this tax increase with everything we've got. congress must take immediate action to prevent any tax increase on working families, small businesses and family farms before next year. so why are we in this mess? you know, it's like i said before. democrats just aren't listening to the american people. the good news is that after seeing so many important decisions made behind closed doors and so much money being funneled into backroom deals, the american people finally have a way in, an unambiguous seat at the table. it's called americaspeakingout.com. now in its third month, the republicans' america speaking out project is giving the american people a chance to share their ideas for building a more accountable government and a better country. every day, thousands of potential solutions are being
debated, discussed and voted on. this week alone, republican lawmakers initiated national discussions on ideas to prevent taxpayer dollars from being used to bail out european countries, to ensure that no new major federal regulation can be implemented without the approval of congress, and debated making all legislation subject to a three-day mandatory public review, so lawmakers will have to read the bills. with each of these dialogues, we're breathing new life into the founding principle that government governs best when it governs closest to the people. and we're forming a new path to prosperity that is built brick- by-brick on the hard work, innovation, entrepreneurship, and good ideas of the american people. thanks for listening. >> we'll show you the defense department retirement ceremony for general stanley mcchrystal, including his remarks, tonight
at 10:15 p.m. eastern on c-span. >> tomorrow on "washington journal" an associated press correspondent reviews secretary clinton's week-long trip to south asia. a discussion on race relations in politics. the former naacp president. raven brooks from net roots nation describes how on-line media sites are used to promote the progressive agenda. washington journal, live at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. >> this weekend, former new york times public editor clark hoyt on the changing newspaper industry. >> a word about some of the standards and maintaining journalistic integrity as we move from one media world to
another. >> sunday night on "q and a." >> this week on "the communicators," the proposal by the fcc for an emergency communications network. we are joined by a representative of public safety communications officials and the former s.e.c. chief engineer. -- fcc chief engineer. >> discussion of public safety and whether part of the spectrum could be dedicated to part of emergency communications. we are joined by the associate managing editor of communications daily. mr. thomas, if we could start with you, there is a lot of
discussion and activity on the sale of the d-block portion of the spectrum and whether that should be dedicated to public safety and emergency medications. >> dedicated on a full-time basis, and now. let me explain why. the nature of public safety communications is that quite often -- most of the time it is not used. god forbid when there is an emergency we need a lot of spectrum. it is intensely used then. the issue becomes how do you provide that a particular time and place the amount of spectrum needed in times of an emergency. >> 9/11? >> katrina, and the other big of miniatures -- any other big emergency in the future. the fcc deals with that simply.
it deals with it by allowing what i have been calling preemption. the way the plan defines it is ambiguous. let me speak for myself. i believe preemption is a proper word. by that i mean given that an emergency occurs at a particular time and place, the public safety organization, to some agreed upon administrative procedures, should have the right to preempt the d-block and other spectrums to get the amount they need. i mean if the spectrum is congested, commercial users get dropped and band with gets allocated to public safety. that way you take care of the emergency, when there is heavy is required. and when there is light years required, at 10 megahertz is more than sufficient. that already is assigned for
broadband. one other issue. i understand the fcc is also considering that another 10 mhz presently assigned for narrow band mate be changed, because the have not done that already, to allow public safety the option to use it for narrow band or broadband. >> your organization -- a recent report by your organization, the association of public safety communications officials. this is what you have to say. the fcc greatly underestimates the current and future capacity needs of public safety when it assumes that 10 megahertz of broadband spectrum is adequate for mission critical high-speed data. >> correct. when the commission looked at the current use of spectrum but public safety and nationally, there was a lot of averaging. the problem we have with it is that we are not an average.
these are people with all laptops in their cars, a lot of technology, license plate mirrors, facial recognition coming on line. we have fire departments which have full computers in the car. these are not hand-held devices. the fcc looked at hand-held devices. there are video cameras in buildings for suspects are. that consumes a lot of band width. we do not believe that was taken into consideration. there is nothing in the report that indicates that. part of our argument is that the commission has stated that they believe 10 mhz is enough today and that we may need more in the future. our issue is we do not plan for today. we plan for the future. wireless networks, wired networks. you do not build based on what you need today. you build based on a forecast for 10 or 15 years.
once that spectrum is gone, you do not have any other spectrum to bring in. we believe that needs to be in large part get a kid spectrum. we also agree there will be times we will have extra spectrum. we should be authorized to have agreements with carriers for them to be able to use that extra spectrum so it does not end up idle. it is a different day and age with communications. in new york city, you cannot have it time to spend an hour or two going through some process with the carrier to get preemption. you need it now. if we control the spectrum is a much easier process to execute. but we agree that at times that there be latitude to bring in commercial users or run applications to use that spectrum to peak efficiency. >> kind of a reverse pre-emption
as mr. thomas described it. >> we are not arguing against partnerships. we support partnerships. we are arguing the need to control the spectrum to assure that. we would be authorized to engage with carriers to help share that spectrum to and rfp basis and ensure there is not always going on. >> any response to that? >> risk, let me give a few statistics. right now, public safety has 100 megahertz below for gigahertz. -- four gigahertz. let me restate that. they have 100 megahertz total. they have 50 blow four gigahertz and about 27 below 700. they use a system called lmr,
land mobile radio. the s.e.c. plans to all of thelte as for. -- the fcc planned all of this for lte. that is 10 times more efficient. no. 2, the interesting thing is if you want to increase bandwidth using a cellular system you have to put cell towers very close together. that increases the cost. if you look at plans like the motorola plan, it is three or four times more expensive to build than the fcc plan with no pre-emption. at the end of the day, i will agree with you. you cannot afford to wait a couple of hours in times of emergency. but there is a lot of ways to do this or it could be near instantaneous, if the procedures
are in place beforehand. basically, you have all you need. my suggestion, whether it is in the plan or not is in a time of emergency public safety should be able to preempt everything they need to. it might be 50 mhz or 100 mhz. within that particular geographic location where the emergency occurs. >> to counterpoints, if i may. i do not think that is fair. out of the 50 is 4.9, which is so high in the spectrum it is difficult to use. it does not the building penetration. >> i agree. it is really not workable. >> most of the canada's throughout uhf you cannot aggregate. one look at broadband, the other
issue which justice kept my aching mind here is that the carriers have not endorsed or supported the idea of preemption. they have made statements that are absolutely against it because of having their customers drop calls. that has become a very dynamic topic in trying to talk to people about it. they operate to make money. the thought of dropping customers by carriers is not necessarily palatable. in many years when we talked about preemption with the carrier -- we have had this discussion for 20 years. they have said they are not going to give public safety pre- emption, what we refer to as ruthless preemption. what about the person who is making a 911 call? what about the doctor talking to the patient? there is a liability of public perception exposure.
as much as i agree that the carriers should be doing this, that has not been this successful discussion. >> one thing i wanted to ask about is there is kind of an extraordinary situation and has developed. at this point, there seems to be the deep divide between the fcc and many in the public safety community in terms of the best course for public safety communication. public safety wants the d-block, and the fcc calls to sell the block to commercial carriers and find another mechanism for providing public safety communications. are you concerned at this point about what seems to be the deep divide between the fcc and folks from your organization and elsewhere in public safety?
>> the phrase you used was appropriate. there seems to be a deep divide. we have had this discussion with the commission many times. they do not control the spectrum. they have laws they have to follow from congress. we have had a very spirited debate on an broadband plan and how that was put together. but that was just one item. there are some of the things the commission works on. they have been helpful with 911 location laws. there've been open to public safety. the chairman has been there. i would not characterize it as a deep divide because i do not feel that way. they have a job to do. they did what they believed was correct. we disagreed with it. we are moving through the process. unfortunately, chairman rockefeller has agreed to
support us. he is very supportive of public safety. that is a long as senator mccain and senator lieberman. they are very supportive of public safety. a think a lot of people on the bill get it. it is a matter of reallocating spectrum for public safety. the commission was in good faith trying to move things forward. if people are feeling that maybe there was a divide or hurt feelings we will get past it. i see this as nothing but a professional discussion. i do not think it got to a point where it was ever heeded. >> any response? >> generally speaking, even when i was at the fcc, there were always supportive of public safety. no argument there. if i limit your question to the issue of broadband, there is a deep divide. with the one to call it a spirited conversation, here is disagreement. here is my fear.
the divide our disagreement or spirit of this debate is overflowing to congress. we have the rockefeller bill. waxman has another bill. there will be others. i hope this argument does not result in something that basically makes the funding go into neutral. this is the last opportunity. maybe that is an overstep meant, but let me say it. it comes with funding. the truth of the matter is that the funding disappears. the whole thing evaporate. if you have the neutral expert body, the fcc, fighting with public safety or strongly debating public safety about a plan, it is entirely possible at the end of the day that congress goes into a stall and says unless you are partners and figure it out we are not going
to fund this. go back to the drawing board. that is a major concern. i do not think you would argue with me crating and interworking nationwide network is an extremely high priority. >> we believe everybody is in agreement on the funding issue. obviously, there are budget constraints in this town. everybody we have talked to wants to find funding for it. there are some hurdles to get through. but that is clearly a key point. the white house believes supports that. the commission does. we support that. we believe we're board to work through those issues. >> is said developing a plan to make an interoperable nationwide network for public safety is akin to the pursuit of the holy grail. >> it has been. what has got me a little upset -- i think we are so close. i really do. i have said there is an argument
between the fcc and public safety, but i really think reasonable people in a room together -- the carriers -- i hate the word refers prevention. they have constantly talked about rootless preemption. but putting some reasonable people in the room, i think something could be worked out that may not be perfect for everyone but at least those to allowing nationwide interrupt ability -- inter-opera abilibil. >> we started to deal with those issues. >> is it time for the fcc may be too call everybody in to a room and say, "we need to focus on a
deal here?" >> i agree. i think they should lock the door and shove pizza under the door until people come out with an agreement. i honest to god think we are very close. if we made a list, the good things and the bad things, the bad things are very small compared to the good things. but the a very important to public safety. the real issue is to get it in there and knock the bad things down to a point that is acceptable to public safety or the agree they're willing to swallow it as long as the get something. i think the fcc is positioned to get the right people in the room, locked the door, and see if they can bring something out , very much like a 24 hour union negotiation. i think we are close. i really do. >> how do you feel about that? >> we are always open for discussion.
we went with this because it was our only option and we feel we need to be able to control and assure our use and that some regulation is not going to change our access to that spectrum. with that said, we state that part of our plan, our desire, is to be able to create partnerships with commercial carriers. in a sense, we have a shared network. it is just a difference of who holds the license. that is one of the key issues. we are not trying to exclude the commercial carriers. we just need to control the license and insure access. >> is that something you could possibly conceive? or do people in your organization feel that is something you have to have control over? >> we need to hold the license. we have made that clear. >> let me ask this. this is washington, d.c.
deals are made all the time. often both parties go off not happy but willing to swallow it. you cannot do it in front of the tv cameras. my point is it is important that those discussions be held intensely. i think an agreement could be reached. you cannot do it individually. you need the carriers. you need those representatives of public safety. you need the commission. i think there is enough wiggle room. i am not trying to say whether you get the d-block or not, but there is enough to get a deal together where everybody walked out of the room together. >> the recently retired as director of technology services for douglas county, nevada. that is reno, correct? >> south of reno. >> give us your answer on
whether or not you had enough spectrum from a local perspective. >> absolutely. the interesting thing about nevada is in some cases we get it worse than anybody else and in other places we did it better. we have got a hodgepodge of 800,erent spectrum's -- 700, 150, 450. those cost a lot of money. we buy systems being built. what happened is when we were building a large site we could only cover certain areas because it would interfere with others. then we go to 450. that gets eaten up. then we go to 400. it has been the historical like scrap food off a dinner table. nobody is given sufficient spectrum at one time to solve the problem. i refer to this as the last,
best hope for it. as much as great engineers design gateways, bridges, and other stuff, the user in the field house to be able to turn the channel and have it work. they are going to go, "i do not have time for that. this is our best hope. >> you are hearing this local perspective. what is your response? >> i have heard it before from many jurisdictions. the issue is not the want of spectrum. the issue is legacy systems. lmr is a very old system. it is kind of like a 1940's system. you have one big, hightower and
you are trying to reach people within a large geographic area, with all the infirmities of doing that. it does not have a cellular arrangement. that system is extremely limited. p-25 has been around since 1980, about 25 years. we are fighting to do it and we assign things. one thing that disturbed me when i was chief engineer -- he basically had the philosophy of getting rid of control and letting the market prevail and minimize service rules, with one exception, public safety. they were overruled. there were too many fcc rules that allow this part of the spectrum to be used as part and other uses -- and other parts to be used the other way.
the net result is it is very hard to create interopererability, even if you have the spectrum. that is being used now, so you have to rip out what is already there, which makes it difficult. >> we have companies that build what they believe is the best technology, but is not interoperable with each other. that is why we previously agreed lte would be the standard. that was a great thing for public safety. we are getting there. we have to have that standard technology to solve this piece of the big puzzle. >> a little earlier, the issue of timing. it looks like there is not negotiations right now between public safety, carriers, and the fcc. we need a bill on the hill
before what will be a pretty tough election. are you concerned about the timing, that all this could start to fall apart? the public safety bureau chief keeps saying we need to do this quickly because carriers are building up their networks. >> part of it is just moving the ball forward. we are public safety. we are not used to spending two or three years debating something. we are used to making decisions. a lot of it is personalities and how we do business. we recognize an issue. we see what is the reasonable solution. we just move the ball forward. moving it forward quickly is part of our personality and who we are. public safety is resolving the problem and moving on. >> one of the questions that has come up is -- what we are talking about is a wireless broadband network. it would give public safety the
ability to do all kinds of things. is there general agreement among public safety about what they need a spark from four, or are most agencies to try to figure that out? >> as we go out and talk to different entities, they have the same vision. that is why we believe that use of the spectrum is going to grow. we are united. this is one of the first times all fire, police, and everyone have united on a topic and a vision. >> it will be everything from floor plans to facial recognition to license plate recognition. i mean real time videos to assess situations, to deploy units. brute force tracking -- be able to know where your resources are. they could not do brute force trucking effectively. we need to make that network. >> what is brute force tracking? >> the ability to see where your resources are in a g a special format.
if you have a road closed, you can see you have a unit on the road. all that makes for a safe america. we catch the bad guys quicker, and the right bad guys. >> we will have to and that there. think you for being on "the communicators." -- thank you for being on "the communicators." >> we will show you the defense department retirement ceremony for general stanley mcchrystal, including his remarks, tonight at 10:15 p.m. eastern on c-span. tomorrow on "washington journal," an associated press correspondent reviews secretary of state clinton picked trip to south asia. then a discussion on race