A federal law passed in February 2012 to help middle class families by creating jobs and cutting payroll taxes included a section mandating the creation of a nationwide interoperable broadband communications system for law enforcement and first responders. The system, which is being created under the direction of the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet), seeks to create a nationwide broadband network capable of being used for a variety of law enforcement purposes including remote surveillance, mobile biometric applications like field fingerprint scanning and facial recognition, as well as automated license plate reading. The system is currently in a pilot phase with less than a dozen locations around the country participating in the initial rollout of the FirstNet network. However, comments from FirstNet board members indicate that the future goals of the system include an interoperable network operating in all 56 states and territories of the U.S. that is capable of integration at the state, local and federal level.
San Francisco Bay Area Regional Interoperable Communications Systems Authority (BayRICS) Facial Recognition Presentation
A presentation presenting an overview of the Bay Area Regional Interoperable Communications System Authority (BayRICS), a 13-member Joint Powers Authority (JPA) serving the San Francisco Bay Area, established in August 2011. The presentation lists license plate readers, facial recognition and field fingerprint scanning as potential uses of the BayRICS network.