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FCC TO DROP MORSE TESTING
In an historic move, the FCC has acted to drop the Morse code requirement for all Amateur Radio license classes. The Commission today adopted a Report and Order (R&O) in WT Docket 05-235. In a break from typical practice, the FCC only issued a public notice at or about the close of business and not the actual Report and Order, so some details -- including the effective date of the R&O – remain uncertain. The public notice is located at:
Also today, the FCC also adopted an Order on Reconsideration, in WT Docket 04-140 -- the "omnibus" proceeding -- agreeing to modify the Amateur Radio rules in response to an ARRL request to accommodate automatically controlled narrowband digital stations on 80 meters in the wake of rule changes that became effective today at Eastern Time. The Commission said it will carve out the 3585 to 3600 kHz frequency segment for such operations. Prior to the long-awaited action on the Morse code issue, Amateur Radio applicants for General and higher class licenses had to pass a 5 WPM Morse code test to operate on HF. The Commission said today's R&O eliminates that requirement for General and Amateur Extra applicants.
"This change eliminates an unnecessary regulatory burden that may discourage current Amateur Radio operators from advancing their skills and participating more fully in the benefits of Amateur Radio," the FCC said. The ARRL had asked the FCC to retain the 5 WPM for Amateur Extra class applicants only. The FCC proposed earlier to drop the requirement across the board, however, and it held to that decision in today's R&O.
Perhaps more important, the FCC's action in WT Docket 05-235 appears to put all Technician licensees on an equal footing: Once the R&O goes into effect, holders of Technician class licenses will have equivalent HF privileges, whether or not they've passed the 5 WPM Element 1 Morse examination. The FCC said the R&O in the Morse code docket would eliminate a disparity in the operating privileges for the Technician and Technician Plus class licensees. Technician licensees without Element 1 credit (i.e., Tech Plus licensees) currently have operating privileges on all amateur frequencies above 30 MHz.
"With today's elimination of the Morse code exam requirements, the FCC concluded that the disparity between the operating privileges of Technician Class licensees and Technician Plus Class licensees should not be retained," the FCC said in its public notice. "Therefore, the FCC, in today's action, afforded Technician and Technician Plus licensees identical operating privileges."
The wholesale elimination of a
Morse code requirement for all license classes ends a longstanding national and
international regulatory tradition in the requirements to gain access to
Amateur Radio frequencies below 30 MHz. The first no-code license in the
The FCC said today's R&O in
WT Docket 05-235 comports with revisions to the international Radio Regulations
resulting from the International Telecommunication
Typically, the effective date of an FCC Order is 30 days after it appears in the Federal Register. That would mean the Morse requirement and the revised 80-meter segment for automatically controlled digital stations would likely not go into effect until late January 2007.
Order: The meeting was called to order at by the President KD7OED. Other officers were present as were
most every member of
Secretary Report: The Secretary KD7HAB did not read the minutes under pressure from those present to get over this “Monkey Business” and get on with the regular planned festivities. This action was approved by loud voice votes from all over the room as a grand and glorious Christmas party got underway.
AMATEUR COMMUNITY TRANSITIONS
SMOOTHLY TO NEW ALLOCATIONS—ARRL Letter
With some confusion but little commotion, the amateur community took
occupancy of more commodious HF phone subbands as the so-called "omnibus" Report and Order (R&O) in WT Docket 04-140:
kicked in December 15 at one minute past Eastern Time. Among other things, the wide-ranging R&O inflated the overall phone allocations on 75 and 40meters and provided Generals with a little additional phone spectrum on 15 meters. On 75 meters, where the phone band expansion came at the expense of spectrum that had been allocated to CW, RTTY and data modes, some operators camped out above the new 3.600 MHz Extra class phone band edge to count down the switch.
"Anyone on that wants last CW es [and] first SSB?" pleaded one operator as the minutes ticked away. He'd been working a string of stations on CW,and when the appointed time arrived, he simply switched to SSB and carried on in that mode.
Bob Hollister, N7INK
MCU Update - Last week I
CERT On-Line Course - I recently finished the on-line portion of the "Introduction to Citizen's Emergency Response Team". I found it provided some practical information in preparing for emergency situations. I would encourage you to have a look at this course, IS-317, at the Emergency Management Institute website. It is the same location as the IS 100/200/700/800 courses. Completion of the on-line course may provide incentive for you to sign up for the hands-on class that is taught locally by the Fry Fire Department. As a minimum, it will help you understand how CERT and RACES can work together. If you have not completed the IS-100 and IS-700 courses, try to get them done over the Christmas break. They don't take that much time.
Storm Ready Communities - I
attended a briefing a few weeks ago provided by the National Weather Service (
Thomas J. Fagan, WB7NXH, Section Mgr. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
FCC LICENSE ADDRESS
Is your mailing address correct on your FCC license? The FCC has been canceling amateur radio licenses that have incorrect addresses. My staff and I have found many incorrect addresses this last week, better get those addresses updated. FCC part 97.23 Mailing address: Each license grant must show the grantee's correct name and mailing address.
The mailing address must be in
an area where the amateur service is regulated by the FCC and where the grantee
can receive mail delivery by the
provide the correct mailing address.
John Lanza KC7IM spoke to his contact at the special license plate div. the other day and everything is on track for production and distribution for the January 2007. When they are ready to be issued, you will see the new plate on the ADOT website. I'll let you all know
as soon as it happens.
2008 SOUTHWESTERN DIVISION
Rick Aldom W7
PUBLIC INFORMATION COORDINATOR
Thunderbird ARC takes on NASCAR. The Thunderbird ARC participated in NASCAR's premiere event that stopped in the valley November 8-12. The club distributed and maintained 500 handheld radios and accessories used by the fire & safety teams, security, etc. The track provided a trailer in the infield and one outside the track, both with banners
to promote the club. Led by KC-KG9JP and Marty-W6YJL, the following members
volunteered their time to assist
It's December already, hard to
believe how the months have flown by.
From the cheap seats, it's been a pretty good year. The big project is cooking along with
significantly less time being devoted to the care and feeding of the
database. We have crossed another
milestone; we now have more than 300 members signed up on the
Section Emergency Coordinator email@example.com
KE7JHI, April Allen KE7JDI, Lon
Oliverson KE7JGI, James Ellzey KE7JEQ, Brent Ellzey KE7JGM
146.70 - (PL 162.2). Contact: Steve Grouse, W1ADW,
Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns about ARRL. If your club or group has an activity or event that would be of interest to other hams throughout our section please email me with the specifics.
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Editor is Ted Weaver, K9TED firstname.lastname@example.org Snail mail stuff you’d like to have me
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