Gov. Bryant announces opt. in to FirstNet nationwide public safety broadband network

States were given the option of opting out to build their own networks, however none made a decision to do so. While New Hampshire has said it will opt out, it's still in talks with FirstNet.

AT&T has said it will spend $40 billion on the FirstNet project, which is expected to create 10,000 jobs in the U.S. FirstNet could also get a 5G upgrade in the future.

As part of the agreement, AT&T will use federal funding to build new cell towers around the state that will help improve existing cell phone service in many rural and tribal areas.

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The decision to reverse course and opt-in, however, Sununu said, came from his conversations with other state governors. "Many of these states had previously expressed serious interest in pursuing an independent opt-out path". No states have announced plans to go with an alternative public safety network planned by Verizon Communications (VZ).

Rivada Networks did not respond to StateScoop's requests for comment by publication time. "Due to their vision and hard fought efforts, I can proudly say that this lifesaving network is now a reality across America; FirstNet is going to enhance the safety and security of our first responders and the people they serve".

Decisions from American Samoa, Guam and Northern Marianas Islands are not due until March 12.

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FirstNet, which will be operated through a public-private partnership with AT&T, will build, operate and maintain the secure wireless broadband communications network at no cost to the states.

States were given until Thursday to decide if they wanted to opt-out of involvement with the FirstNet program.

"Together, we conducted the nation's most thorough state level review of available FirstNet options, negotiated hard on behalf of the state and its first responders, and ultimately obtained one of the best opt-in plan proposals of any state in the country", Stevens said in a statement.

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