Public Safety Interoperable Communications Grant Program

To assist public safety agencies in the acquisition of, deployment of, or training for the use of interoperable communications systems that can utilize or enable interoperability with communications systems that can utilize reallocated public safety spectrum for radio communications.

Agency - Department of Commerce

The Department of Commerce fosters and promotes the nation's economic development and technological advancement through vigilance in international trade policy, domestic business policy and growth, and promoting economic progress at all levels.

Website Address

Program Accomplishments

The PSIC Grant Program awarded $968,385,000 to fund interoperable communications projects from the 56 States and Territories.

Uses and Use Restrictions

Provides grants to assist public safety agencies in the planning and coordination associated with, acquisition of, deployment of, or training for the use of interoperable communications equipment, software and systems that utilize reallocated public safety spectrum for radio communication; enable interoperability with communications systems that can utilize reallocated public safety spectrum for communication; or otherwise improve or advance the interoperability of public safety.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

The PSIC grant will be awarded to the 56 States and Territories.

The Governor of each State and Territory has designated a State Administrative Agency (SAA), which can apply for and administer the funds under the PSIC Grant Program.

The SAA is the only agency eligible to apply for PSIC funds.

Beneficiary Eligibility

The SAA is responsible for obligating PSIC funds to eligible pass-through, public safety recipients.


All applicants must be a public safety agency that is a State, local, or tribal government entity or nongovernmental organization authorized by such entity, whose sole or principal purpose is to protect safety of life, health, or property.

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

Program staff members are available to provide technical and other assistance in preparing application forms.

This program is excluded from coverage under E.O.


Application Procedures

The SAAs must apply for PSIC Grant Program funding through the online system through the Authorized Organization Representative (AOR.) Instructions are available on the website (

Award Procedures

Each applications will be reviewed by NTIA and DHS for completeness, adherence to programmatic guidelines, feasibility, and how well the proposed solution addresses the identified need or capability shortfall. If submissions do not meet PSIC requirements, they will be returned to the submitting State or Territory and funds will be withheld until the applicant meets all PSIC requirements. Upon approval of the application, the grant will be awarded to the SAA. Grantees can draw down and expend funds through the DHS Payment and Reporting System.


The deadline for filing applications was August 22, 2007. The deadline for submitting the required Statewide Communications Interoperability Plans and Investment Justifications was December 3, 2007.


The Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, (Public Law 109-171), as amended by Section 2201 of Public Law 110-53, and Section 4 of the Call Home Act of 2006, Public Law 109-459.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Award payments are generally within 90 days of application approval.





Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

Each public safety agency receiving PSIC funds is required to meet and document the 20 percent statutory match requirement for each project, during the period of performance of the grant program.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Payment and Reporting System payments are generally within 90 days.

Post Assistance Requirements




Audits may be conducted in accordance with the terms and conditions of the award and Department of Commerce Financial Assistance Standard Terms and Conditions. The Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007, requires the Departments Office of Inspector General to report annually on the management of the NTIA PSIC program to Congress, and conduct financial audits on not fewer than 25 States or territories receiving NTIA PSIC grant awards.


Grant recipient must retain records for three years.

Financial Information

Account Identification



FY 07 $968,385,000; FY 08 $0; and FY 09 est not reported.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

PSIC funds were allocated using a two-part process. First, each State, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico will receive a minimum of $3 million and each Territory will receive a minimum of $500,000 to ensure that it will be able to make meaningful improvements to its interoperable communications capabilities. The remaining 80 percent of funds are allocated to States and Territories using a formula similar to the current Homeland Security Grant Program (HSGP) risk formula, this formula is the product of three variables: threat, vulnerability and consequence.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

Available from .

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office


Headquarters Office

Laura Pettus, Program Specialist, Office of Telecommunications and Information Applications/NTIA, Room 4812, Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20230. Telephone: (202) 482-5802.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Priority compensation shall be given to public safety agencies that seek solutions that (1) achieve meaningful and measurable improvements in the state of interoperability for public safety communications and (2) fill interoperability gaps identified in the Statewide Plans.

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Edited by: Michael Saunders

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