Temporary National Coordination Office

In May 2018, Federal-Provincial-Territorial (FPT) Ministers Responsible for Emergency Management collectively acknowledged the benefits of a potential Public Safety Broadband Network (PSBN) and endorsed the establishment of a Temporary National Coordination Office (TNCO) to guide the work on a PSBN for the next two years. The TNCO is comprised of team members from Public Safety Canada, FPT jurisdictions, Tri-Services (police, paramedics and firefighters) associations, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, and other potential PSBN user groups. Specifically, the following departments, jurisdictions and associations are currently members of the TNCO (in alphabetical order):

Mandate

Established in July 2018, the TNCO will develop national options and recommendations on a potential PSBN for Canada, supported by research, analysis, and engagement with PSBN stakeholders. Specifically, the office will:

  1. Serve as a single point of contact for stakeholders on national PSBN work, including the private sector;
  2. Engage diverse stakeholders to gather perspectives to support the development of recommendations;
  3. Establish and maintain a network of researchers and experts, and provide national leadership for PSBN pilots and trials to inform and support TNCO work objectives;
  4. Develop and recommend:
    1. A PSBN Strategy for Canada that operationalizes the FPT Ministers’ endorsed guiding considerations;
    2. Further develop and operationalize approaches for business models and permanent national governance;
    3. Deployment options for a national and interoperable PSBN;
    4. National PSBN standards and requirements (e.g. interoperability, security, priority and pre-emption); and,
    5. Innovative solutions to address coverage gaps and capacity challenges.

Mission Statement

Play a leadership role in the advancement of a national and interoperable PSBN for Canada.

Key Functions

To fulfill its mandate, the TNCO is organized into three business lines: Policy and Outreach, Research and Development, and Program Development. Each business line is responsible for specific activities in relation to the mandate. Notwithstanding these responsibilities, the business lines communicate with each other to share information and work in collaboration to ensure the TNCO operates as a single team.

Policy and Outreach

Research and Development

Program Development

Public Safety Broadband Network Storyline

Public Safety Broadband Network Storyline
Date Milestone
March 2012 Innovation, Science and Development Canada (ISED) (then Industry Canada) designated 10 MHz of the 700 MHz spectrum for public safety broadband communications.
April 2015 In Budget 2015, the Government of Canada (GoC) committed funds “to take initial steps to establish a PSBN” and announced the designation of the additional 10 MHz of 700 MHz spectrum for public safety broadband use.
May 2016 FPT Ministers Responsible for Emergency Management committed to accelerated stakeholder engagement on potential implementation of a PSBN.
May 2017 The GoC announced a commitment of $3 million in 2017-18 to engage diverse stakeholders as well as to gather and analyze evidence pertaining to potential PSBN implementation models.
June 2017 ISED issued a decision paper confirming the allocation of 20 MHz of the 700 MHz spectrum for public safety use.
November 2017 Subsequent to that confirmation, ISED issued a Request for Information seeking ICT/ telecom industry perspectives on a viable business model; governance model; and, ecosystem of applications, services and devices, to inform the GoC’s approach to a PSBN for Canada. The RFI closed in January 2018.
May 2018 FPT Ministers Responsible for Emergency Management collectively acknowledged the benefits of a potential PSBN and endorsed the standing-up of a Temporary National Coordination Office (TNCO) to guide the work on a PSBN for the next two years.
July 2018 The TNCO became operational and held its first face-to-face meeting in Ottawa, Ontario. Subsequent face-to-face meetings are scheduled to occur quarterly.
June 2019 The TNCO release: Progress Report on a National Public Safety Broadband Network.

Stakeholder Engagement

Stakeholder engagement will be ongoing and continues to be a key consideration for TNCO. The TNCO recognizes that the development and implementation of a Canadian PSBN is an important yet significant undertaking that requires the collective efforts and commitment of all levels of government, public safety communities across Canada, and various private industry stakeholders. The TNCO is committed to engaging stakeholders to ensure they have an opportunity to share their views and suggestions throughout the process to ultimately present a consolidated view of a PSBN for Canada. The TNCO will engage provinces and territories, municipalities, tri-services associations, industry, critical infrastructure operators, academia, non-governmental organizations and Indigenous community representatives. 

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The TNCO will engage: provinces and territories, municipalities, tri-services associations, industry, critical infrastructure operators, academia, non-governmental organizations and Indigenous community representatives.

Progress Report

On June 28, 2019, the TNCO published a Progress Report on a National Public Safety Broadband Network to share information with stakeholders on the work accomplished to date towards a potential PSBN for Canada. The TNCO wants to ensure that the recommended approach will meet the needs of the public safety community and is supported by research, analysis and stakeholder engagement.

What’s next?

The TNCO is working to fulfill its mandate and develop options and recommendations for a potential PSBN for Canada. The TNCO will submit a Policy Paper to FPT ministers responsible for emergency management in early 2020. The Policy Paper will present a consolidated view of stakeholders on issues such as principles for a Canadian PSBN; recommendations and considerations on potential implementation models, service delivery models, licensing structures and business models; and an examination of PSBN pilots and trials domestically and internationally. The Policy Paper will be the product of ongoing consultations, stakeholder engagement, research and analysis, and will respond to ISED’s decision paper published in June 2017. Prior to issuing the Policy Paper, the TNCO is committed to presenting a Progress Report in summer 2019. The Progress Report will inform stakeholders of the work accomplished to date and will identify gaps working towards the final Policy Paper.

Contact us:

If you have questions or comments, please contact the Temporary National Coordination Office by email at TNCO-BTCN@canada.ca.

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