ESA Files Comments with the FCC
(Irving, TX) Feb. 10, 2015 —The Electronic Security Association (ESA), along with the Alarm Industry Communications Committee (AICC), submitted supporting comments to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in Washington, D.C. outlining positions relating to POTS changes, copper “retirement” and battery backup inquiries from this key federal agency. The AICC also submitted comments on proposed FCC regulations, which were endorsed by ESA.
“These comments are just the beginning of what may be a tremendous challenge for our industry as revisions are considered to telecommunications statutes after thirty years by both the US Congress and the FCC,” said ESA President Marshall Marinace. “We will ensure that our industry’s interests are represented in an effort to protect our members’ businesses as technology advances.”
The FCC comments by ESA highlighted support for NFPA minimum standards on battery backup requirements of eight hours, as a key aspect to “…maintain power of life savings communications during power outages,” which is critical to consumer’s public safety. ESA also advocated “educating customers” on the “potential loss of service,” and to include a self-monitoring feature that “notifies the customer audibly and visually when the backup power is in use and when it is running low.”
Former ESA President John Knox said ESA focused its FCC comments on another key aspect to the growing debate on copper retirement-that being its level of “reliability and dependability.” He said the comments are correct in that the industry is “…experiencing many occasions in the field where legacy alarms will not communicate using VoIP technologies.” He said that the FCC should just adhere to a very simple standard; the proposed technology should be more reliable than the present, especially with regard to time-tested and reliable copper.
ESA urged the FCC in considering their regulatory actions to require more “extensive testing and validation by manufacturers and ISPs for any technology that seeks to impact the communications of the life safety and security industry.”
“The President and the FCC are considering many more issues that will impact the electronic security and life safety industry from a regulatory perspective and we are working with AICC to meet these challenges. In addition, the Congress has already begun draft legislative efforts in the US House and US Senate to change the 1996 Telecommunications Act on many of these key issues and again, ESA has this as a top priority in 2015.”
Established in 1948, the Electronic Security Association (ESA) is the largest trade association representing the electronic life safety and security industry. Member companies install, integrate and monitor intrusion and fire detection, video surveillance and electronic access control systems for commercial, residential, industrial and governmental clients. In cooperation with an alliance of chapter associations, ESA provides technical and management training, government advocacy and delivers information, advice, tools, and services that members use to grow their businesses and prosper. ESA may be reached at (888) 447-1689 or on the Web at www.ESAweb.org.