I don't think the question was about authorization to use the selected frequency, but ability to use it while complying with other regulations (specifically, not interfering with co-channel users). Whether by necessity, accident, or intent co-channel users here sometimes don't have the luxury of geographic separation. Different PLs alleviate the problem only a little bit. (Anybody else local remember Hillsborough fire's relay on the Bridgewater-Raritan school bus input frequency? That got past the frequency coordinator.)
I'm bemused by these links, and the implementation of some trunked systems in the area. I understood the two biggest advantages of trunked systems to be spectrum efficiency and interoperability. Take Franklin as an example:
- No users other than police have access to any of the police channels, even in receive-only.
- Police very rarely switch to other channels to communicate directly, messages are almost always relayed through dispatch, and this sometimes involves two different dispatch centers.
- Nearly all the legacy base/repeater channels have been retained in use. This includes Police 1, Police 4, Fire 1, Fire South, Fire D1, Fire D3, JEMS-1. By my count the only base/repeater channels relinquished are Fire-North, two DPW channels, and the squad repeater.
- Districts 2 and 3 have added conventional UHF repeaters to help their operations.
So what is really the benefit of this trunked system? It gets everybody radios which can also have access on the county's trunked system, which is a very good thing. The police have more effective channels and better coverage, and municipal services have more channels. Fire, EMS, and DPW are using about as many talkgroups as they had conventional channels before, and fire/EMS could talk together on VHF as well.
Other specific things which have surprised me from various towns/ systems:
- ALS and BLS using the same trunked system and same dispatch center, but using two different talkgroups even when responding to the same call. (This isn't volunteers mustering, this is the ALS truck and the BLS ambulance on the road and/or at the scene.)
- Fire service removing all EMS "tactical" talkgroups from their radios, keeping only the EMS dispatch channels.
- One town's emergency service radios not including the its county's standard tactical (conventional) channels so on-scene interoperability involves borrowing radios.