KLTV 7 Investigates: Report on direct-dialing 911 from federal b - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

KLTV 7 Investigates: Report on direct-dialing 911 from federal buildings 3 years late

The William Steger Federal Building and United States Courthouse in downtown Tyler would be one facility that would be listed in the GSA report. (Source: KLTV Staff) The William Steger Federal Building and United States Courthouse in downtown Tyler would be one facility that would be listed in the GSA report. (Source: KLTV Staff)
TYLER, TX (KLTV) - A report detailing the ability of federal offices to connect directly with 911 operators is not complete, three years after its due date to Congress. The report was part of the Spectrum Act approved by Congress, mandating the General Services Administration to perform a survey of its multi-line telephone systems and their ability to direct-dial 911.

The GSA report was due to Congress in February 2012. After a letter from Federal Communications Commissioner Ajit Pai and numerous requests from KLTV 7 Investigates, the GSA indicted the report was never completed.

The report was set to show each federal office under the management of the General Services Administration's ability to reach 911 either directly or if extra digits were needed.

"It's important for us to get that report and see where the gaps are," FCC Commissioner Pai said.

The report echoes efforts of Commissioner Pai and Hank Hunt, whose granddaughter tried to dial 911 from a hotel room in Marshall, Texas, but was unable to reach an operator because she did not dial an extra 9 that was required.

"She was taught to dial 911 by her mother, her teachers and every police car she goes by... every fire truck.. every fireman," Hunt said before a state hearing in Austin last year. "If you need help, call 911 and she did. And we let her down."

Since their efforts started shortly after Kari's death, a majority of hotel chains now require their locations to have direct access to 911.

In the week since Pai sent his letter requesting a copy of the GSA report, and KLTV's numerous attempts to check on the status of the report due in 2012, we were told the agency is putting the report together.

Congressman Louie Gohmert released a statement regarding the GSA's failure to complete the report by its 2012 deadline:

"GSA had 9 months to fulfill a clear congressional mandate in the law. Now, more than 3 years after that mandate was signed into law, there is still no response. Though it would not have helped her, this report should have been completed long before Kari's death. The GSA's failure to respond to an Act of Congress does little to re-instill any confidence or credibility that the agency lost as a result of its scandal-laden past. Although it appears that the administration does not find this issue a priority, I will continue to look at ways to push for a response from the GSA."

The General Services Administration still has not said when the report will be completed.

According to officials at the U.S. Attorney's Office and the U.S. District Clerk's Office in the Eastern District of Texas, their Tyler offices allow direct dialing to 911.

Copyright 2015 KLTV. All rights reserved.

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