Funding Universal 9-1-1 Emergency Services in a Transforming Telecommunications Environment: A Review of Current Policies And Implications for the Future
Benjamin Terry Williams
University of Maryland
Florida State University
Stephen D McDowell
Florida State University - College of Communication and Information
August 15, 2009
While U.S. citizens may take for granted the availability of universal 9-1-1 emergency services, ongoing funding issues threaten to undermine operations. 9-1-1 services are largely dependent on funding from state-level 9-1-1 user fees/surcharges assessed on telecommunication services capable of accessing 9-1-1 services, such as wireline, VoIP, and postpaid/prepaid mobile (wireless) services. This paper leverages case study research on 9-1-1 funding at the state level in the 2007-2009 timeframe to address exploratory 9-1-1 funding research propositions. The central research question in this study is how the transforming telecommunications environment has impacted 9-1-1 user fee policies. At issue is what makes good 9-1-1 funding public policy in the states. This research will be of interest to policymakers and decision makers at the local, state, and federal levels, as well as to telecommunications, emergency management, public policy, and e-Government academics. The findings of this research indicate how states are currently assessing 9-1-1 user fees. Based on recent trends in policies, implications for the future are projected. Findings of this paper are based on a state-by-state sampling of 9-1-1 user fees/surcharges and related case study evidence. Conclusions uphold research propositions. 9-1-1 fee funding policy theory building is proposed for better understanding today‘s 9-1-1 funding and for facilitating tomorrow’s migration of the current 9-1-1 system to the next generation (NG9-1-1) system.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 33
Keywords: 9-1-1, telecommunications regulation, government intervention, user fee/surcharge, technology funding, technology transformation, IT governance, public policy
Date posted: February 13, 2012
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