PA 09-86—SB 761

Public Safety and Security Committee

Appropriations Committee


SUMMARY: This act allows subscriber information in the enhanced 9-1-1 (E 9-1-1) database to be used for enabling emergency notification systems (e. g. , Reverse 9-1-1) in life-threatening emergencies.  It defines an “emergency notification system” as a service that notifies the public of emergencies. Under prior law, subscriber information could be used only in responding to emergency calls or investigating false or intentionally misleading reports of incidents requiring emergency service.  

The act defines “subscriber information” as the name, address, and telephone number in the E 9-1-1 database of a telephone used to place a 9-1-1 call or in connection with an emergency notification system. It makes confidential and exempt from the Freedom of Information Act subscriber information provided for (1) enabling such systems and (2) the other purposes specified in existing law.

The act outlines procedures governing release and use of database information by database providers, the Office of State-wide Emergency Telecommunications (OSET), the Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security (DEMHS), and public safety answering points (PSAP).

The act broadens liability protection for telecommunication companies. It also makes a minor change with regard to the number used to make a 9-1-1 call.

EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2009


Subscriber Information

The act requires that, each month, the E 9-1-1 service database provider give OSET an electronic copy of the current subscriber information in the database. OSET must make this information available to DEMHS and to each PSAP under a memorandum of understanding (MOU).  Each PSAP that has entered into a MOU must make the information available to any municipality within the PSAP's jurisdiction that requests it.

By October 1, 2009, the E 9-1-1 service database provider and OSET must enter into an agreement on the provision of the E 9-1-1 service database information, including paying the provider for compiling the information.

Liability Issues

By law, telephone companies and voice over Internet protocol (VOIP) service providers (e. g. , Vonage) must forward the telephone number and street address from which a 9-1-1 call is made to a safety answering point.  The act immunizes the companies and their agents from liability to anyone, not just the caller, for (1) releasing database information as required by the act and (2) failure of any equipment or procedure in connection with the emergency notification system.


E 9-1-1

A 9-1-1 service allows users to reach a PSAP by dialing 9-1-1. The E 9-1-1 service has telephone network features that allow the PSAP personnel to automatically identify the user's telephone number and location in order to direct the appropriate emergency services to the scene.

Emergency Notification System

Emergency notification systems are used to provide pre-recorded emergency telephone messages to targeted areas or entire cities at a rate of hundreds or thousands of calls per minute. The system can be used to warn residents of severe weather, hazardous material spills, pandemics, or other emergencies.

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