Monitoring The Area - II

In early February I wrote about the coming 800MHz rebanding effort and how Keller would be affected.  The FCC has mandated that all public safety systems be migrated by June 26, 2008, and I had been told that this would occur for the Northeast Tarrant system on April 14th.  However, when that date came and went I started doing a little digging and came across the 800 MHz Reconfiguration Transition Administrator website, which included information about the waiver process for delaying rebanding beyond 6/26/2008.  Just out of curiosity, I entered the callsign for the system (WPFR225) into the tool and discovered that the City of Bedford (the owner of the system) had filed for a waiver ( PDF Icon ) on March 14, 2008 to extend the deadline for rebanding to December 12, 2011 because Fort Worth won’t be ready in time:

Specifically, the Licensee requests until December 12, 2011 to complete its 800 MHz rebanding.4 The public interest would be served by granting the requested waiver because it would allow Licensee to reband its 800 MHz system in a reasonable, prudent and timely manner consistent with the goals of the 800 MHz rebanding program. In support of this Request for Waiver the Licensee provides the attached Waiver Request Information Form and the following explanation of the reason(s) for not completing reconfiguration by June 26, 2008, which is consistent with the assertion that a grant of the waiver would serve the public interest:
Licensee shares a number of talk groups and is party to a mutual aid agreement with the regional 800 MHz public safety radio system operated by the City of Fort Worth. Because of the interdependencies between Licensee and the Fort Worth system, Licensee cannot complete rebanding until Fort Worth has retuned its infrastructure. The Transition Administrator also recognized these interdependencies and proceeded accordingly in generating the consolidated schedule for Region 40 following its Implementation Planning Session.

I also checked for a waiver request from Fort Worth, and found that they had submitted an interim request until June 1, 2008, at which time they would submit a request for a “permanent” waiver.  This due to the fact that they’re still negotiating with Sprint Nextel over the costs of rebanding and don’t anticipate to complete the statement of work until June 1st and won’t know until then exactly when they can complete rebanding (in other words, they gave the FCC what we refer to as a “date for a date” in the IT business). 

Given all this negotiating and delaying, I suppose there’s no longer any need to rush out and buy a $500 scanner to continue to be able to listen to Keller and surrounding cities.  Perhaps by the time they get around to actually rebanding the prices will have come down a little.

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