Category Archives: Government

California AB-1222 ammended to exclude Specialized Mobile Radio Devices from Current Law

With the passing of California AB-1785 there has been a lot of confusion and concern that use of amateur radio devices in a mobile setting was now outlawed.

Existing law makes it a crime to drive a motor vehicle while holding and operating a handheld wireless telephone or electronic wireless communications device, as specified. Existing law defines an electronic wireless communications device as including, but not limited to, a broadband personal communication device, a specialized mobile radio device, a handheld device or laptop computer with mobile data access, a pager, or a two-way messaging device.

Recently California Assembly Bill 1222, introduced by Assembly Member Quirk, was amended in Assembly on April 17, 2017 that looks to allow for use of mobile commercial radio systems.

This bill would remove a specialized mobile radio device and a two-way messaging device from the list of devices specifically included as an electronic wireless communications device.

Specialize Mobile Radio device

The Specialized Mobile Radio (SMR) service is defined by 47 CFR, Part 90. and utilizes the 800/900 MHz spectrum.

Two-way Messaging device

Two-way messaging device is a vague term and open to much interpretation by the public and authorities. One could argue that texting is using a two-way messaging device.

Again just was when the original Bill was passed, it looks like non-technical, legislators and staff that have no real knowledge of the basic technical aspects of radio are writing these laws.

Text of the Bill can be viewed here:  http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=201720180AB1222

What’s the buzz? Pot-growing lights vex ham radio operators

By MARINA VILLENEUVE, ASSOCIATED PRESS AUGUSTA, Maine — Feb 28, 2017, 9:38 AM ET

Retired Coast Guard officer Roger Johnson sometimes notices a harsh buzz when he turns on his amateur radio, and he blames high-powered lighting used to grow pot.

Amateur radio operators say the legalization of marijuana is creating a chronic nuisance thanks to interference caused by electrical ballasts that regulate indoor lamps used to grow pot. The American Radio Relay League wants the Federal Communications Commission to take a stand against devices that give off much more interference than federal law allows in homes.

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CIA Declassified Documents about Amateur Radio Available in Searchable Online Database

Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) reports about Amateur Radio in the former Soviet Union (including the Baltic States) and Warsaw Pact member countries have been declassified to a new searchable online database, the CIA Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Electronic Reading Room.

Documents include translations and assessments of Amateur Radio clubs, including Soviet DOSAAF (Volunteer Society for Cooperation with the Army, Aviation, and Fleet) groups; training; monitoring Sputniks; technology and equipment, and even QSL cards.

All documents have been declassified and occasionally “sanitized” and made available to the public for the first time in this archive. Some of these documents were only available previously in a closed system at the US National Archives. — Thanks to Southgate Amateur Radio News via Andy Thomas, G0SFJ

Source: http://www.arrl.org/news/cia-declassified-documents-about-amateur-radio-available-in-searchable-online-database

Amateur Radio Parity Act Speeds to U.S. House Passage, Heads to U.S. Senate

Just 10 days after being introduced, the 2017 Amateur Radio Parity Act legislation, H.R. 555, passed the U.S. House of Representatives this week on unanimous consent under a suspension of House rules. The bill’s language is identical to that of the 2015 measure, H.R. 1301, which won House approval late last summer after attracting 126 co-sponsors, but failed to clear the U.S. Senate last fall as the 114th Congress wound down. The new bill, again sponsored by Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), was introduced on January 13 with initial co-sponsorship by Rep. Joe Courtney (D-CT) and Rep. Greg Walden, W7EQI (R-OR), who chairs the influential House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

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Future FAA Rules Could Affect Some Amateur Radio Antenna Support Structures

FAA LogoYet-to-be-developed Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) rules stemming from the recent passage in Congress of H.R. 636, the FAA Reauthorization Act, could pose additional marking requirements for a small number of Amateur Radio towers. The bill instructs the FAA to enact rules similar to state-level statutes now in place that are aimed at improving aircraft safety in the vicinity of meteorological evaluation towers (METs) set up in rural areas. In the wake of fatal crop dusting aircraft collisions with METs, often erected on short notice, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recommended in 2013 that states enact laws — sometimes called “crop duster” statutes — requiring marking and registration of METs. While some state crop duster laws exempt ham radio towers, the federal legislation does not. ARRL General Counsel Chris Imlay, W3KD, said, however, that the list of exemptions in the federal legislation restricts application of the new rules to a very small subset of Amateur Radio towers.

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ARRL Reaches Agreement with Community Associations Institute on Parity Act

05/28/2016

After 2-1/2 months of intense negotiations, ARRL has reached an agreement with the Community Associations Institute (CAI) — the national association of homeowners associations — concerning amended language of the Amateur Radio Parity Act. This will allow H.R. 1301 to proceed to what is hoped will be passage of the bill in both houses of Congress this year.

“We express support for H.R. 1301, the Amateur Radio Parity Act, as proposed to be amended,” the CAI statement said.

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House subcommittee approves Kinzinger bills to boost amateur radio usage, prevent FCC broadband rate regulation

The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Communications and Technology approved three bills on Thursday, including two measures introduced by U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL).

The Amateur Radio Parity Act, H.R. 1301, would instruct the FCC to adopt rules that protect the rights of amateur radio operators. Kinzinger’s No Rate Regulation of Broadband Internet Access Act, H.R. 2666, meanwhile, would prevent FCC regulation of rates for broadband Internet.

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Congressman Intercedes with FCC Chairman on Amateur Radio Interference Concerns

ARRL.org
01/22/2016

New York Congressman Peter King has asked FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler to put some Enforcement Bureau heat on those interfering with various radio communication services, including Amateur Radio, in the New York City Metropolitan Area. While visiting Capitol Hill to promote the Amateur Radio Parity Act, ARRL Hudson Division Director Mike Lisenco, N2YBB, and General Counsel Chris Imlay, W3KD, recently met with King, a Republican representing New York’s 2nd District, to discuss the interference issue. King is among the original of the 118 cosponsors of the Amateur Radio Parity Act (H.R. 1301) in the US House.

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Amateur Radio Parity Act HR 1301 to Get House Subcommittee Airing

Amateur Radio Parity Act Logo_13ARRL.org
01/12/2016

HR 1301, the US House version of the Amateur Radio Parity Act, will be among four communications-related measures set for a legislative hearing on January 12 before the House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology. Chairing the panel is US Rep Greg Walden, W7EQI, an Oregon Republican.

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Amateur Radio Parity Act Passes Senate Committee, Gains Cosponsors

ARRL.org
November 18, 2015

The Amateur Radio Parity Act S. 1685 has been endorsed by the US Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. In the voice vote on November 18, two Senators — Bill Nelson (D-FL) and Brian Schatz (D-HI) — asked to be recorded as voting “no.” The Committee held an executive session to consider the various legislative measures and nominations.

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