While recognized as a priority, funding for emergency communications remains a challenge, especially in a period of stressed budgets and competing priorities. 

To ensure public safety stakeholders have the information they need to make effective decisions before, during, and after budget cuts, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), in partnership with SAFECOM and the National Council of Statewide Interoperability Coordinators (NCSWIC), has published the Contingency Planning Guide for Emergency Communications Funding.  

The guide provides a series of contingency considerations to justify investment in mission-critical components and provides a series of considerations to help decision-makers plan for the continuity of public safety communications budgets. 

Building off of the Contingency Considerations When Facing Reductions in Emergency Communications Budgets fact sheet, this guide provides a more comprehensive look at the considerations public safety officials must weigh when planning for or facing budget reductions. Specifically, this expanded guide focuses on five mission-critical emergency communications components and provides detail on the considerations within each category, including personnel, operational costs, equipment, software, and a catch-all “other.” Additionally, the guide features real-world examples showcasing the successful implementation of contingency planning best practices and considerations.

Those with questions are encouraged to contact SAFECOMGovernance@cisa.dhs.gov. For more information, please visit the ‘Sustaining Public Safety Communications Systems’ section of the SAFECOM Funding Resources webpage at cisa.gov/safecom/funding.