The FCC today approved the minimum technical requirements for its interoperable first responders network, which operates in the D Block of the 700 MHz band. 

The requirements were submitted to the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) by the FCC's Interoperability Board in a report  which sets forth the recommended minimum technical requirements for interoperability.  

The report covers guidelines and rules relating to 3GPP LTE standards, interfaces and guidelines; user equipment and device management; testing; evolution; handover and mobility; grade of service; prioritization and quality of service; and security.

"The underlying technology is one aspect of achieving interoperability," the report states. "However, interoperability can only truly be established and preserved over time through vigilant policies, governance, and practices associated with creation, evolution and operation of the network by FirstNet."

The Spectrum Act, signed into law by President Obama in February of 2012, established FirstNet to oversee all actions necessary to ensure the building, deployment and operation of the nationwide public safety broadband network.  The Act also established the Interoperability Board to develop recommended minimum technical requirements to ensure a nationwide level of interoperability for the nationwide public safety broadband network.