FW: ARLB007 FCC Seeks Public Comments on Emergency Communications by Amateur Radio and Impediments to Amateur Radio Communications

Gary Harmon


Gary H. Harmon, Jr. - K5JWK
6003 Archwood
San Antonio, TX 78239-1504
210.657.1549h / 210.884.6926c

"Too many projects, not enough time".

-----Original Message-----
From: ARRL Web site [mailto:memberlist@...]
Sent: Thursday, April 05, 2012 10:00 AM
To: gharmon@...
Subject: ARLB007 FCC Seeks Public Comments on Emergency Communications by
Amateur Radio and Impediments to Amateur Radio Communications

ARLB007 FCC Seeks Public Comments on Emergency Communications by Amateur
Radio and Impediments to Amateur Radio Communications

ARRL Bulletin 7 ARLB007
From ARRL Headquarters
Newington CT April 5, 2012
To all radio amateurs

ARLB007 FCC Seeks Public Comments on Emergency Communications by Amateur
Radio and Impediments to Amateur Radio Communications

In response to the Congressional directive to prepare a study to assess
Amateur Radio's role in emergency and disaster communications and the impact
of private land use regulations on the amateur community's ability to
provide such communications, the FCC issued DA 12-523 soliciting comments
from the public. The period for public comment runs until May 17, 2012.

"As part of the study contained in Public Law No. 112-96, the Commission has
opened a 45 day period for comments to be filed on the issue," said ARRL
Regulatory Information Manager Dan Henderson, N1ND. "Because of the short
deadline for the study to be completed and presented to Congress -- before
the end of August -- the ARRL and the amateur community must quickly
mobilize their response."

The FCC Public Notice focuses on two specific areas for comments.
The first is the role that Amateur Radio has played and continues to play to
support emergency and disaster relief organizations, such as FEMA and
local/state emergency management agencies. The second is to determine
impediments to enhanced Amateur Radio communications. This would include the
impact that private land-use regulations -- such as deed restrictions and
homeowner association covenants -- have on the ability of licensed amateurs
to fully participate in providing support communications to the served

"This study is not about zoning ordinances or regulations adopted by the
local or state governments," Henderson explained. "Amateurs already have the
limited protection of PRB-1 to assist them with those situations. The areas
of concern here are the limitations that are placed on a property when it is
purchased, either as part of the deed of sale or by restrictions imposed by
the neighborhood/homeowner's association. Those restrictions -- sometimes
referred to as CC&Rs -- are not currently covered by the FCC's PRB-1
decision from 1985."

To allow the ARRL to quickly collect and collate relevant information from
the amateur community to help support the filing it will make with the FCC
on this issue, a website has been setup. The site --
www.arrl.org/ccr-study-information -- provides details about what kind of
information is needed by the ARRL.

Also on the site, you will find links to two online data collection forms.
The first form allows you to provide information about specific emergency
communications in which Amateur Radio has played a role since January 2000.
The second form asks for specific information on the CC&Rs/deed restrictions
that control your property. It also asks you to provide information on how
those restrictions have impacted your ability to fully support emergency

"Whether you are an ARRL member or not, your information and situation are
important to helping us make the case for all amateurs," Henderson said.
"Whether your support communications are with ARES, RACES, SKYWARN, CERT or
other emergency and disaster groups, your voice should be heard. If you
cannot operate effectively from home during an emergency because CC&Rs
prohibit adequate antennas on your property, that is important to document
and quantify. This issue affects all of Amateur Radio, not just ARRL

Henderson said that due to the short timeframe that the FCC has allotted for
public comment, time is of the essence. In order to allow the ARRL to
develop its comments, the ARRL asks that all information sent by the amateur
community be received at the ARRL no later than April 25, 2012: "We realize
this is a very short turnaround asking for your response, but this is based
on the time provided by the Commission for the comment window."

It is important that when you provide specifics of your CC&R, you also
provide the ARRL with a copy of its actual wording. If you have the CC&R in
a digital format (or you can scan the document into a file), it can either
be uploaded through the website above or it can be sent via an e-mail to
CCRinfo@... . If you do not have an electronic format, a hard copy may
be sent via US mail to: CCR Study Information, ARRL, 225 Main St, Newington,
CT 06111.

"We need factual, specific details," Henderson said. "The more accurate
information we have -- including copies of the CC&R language -- the stronger
case we can make. Having copies of the exact CC&Rs is important. It allows
us to demonstrate the wide variation of restrictions. Including the specific
text is as important as any other piece of information you provide."

If you have questions about what is being requested, you may contact the
ARRL Regulatory Information Office via e-mail at reginfo@.... "Again,
time is of the essence in this matter,"
Henderson said. "This is the best opportunity that amateurs have had to
address the impact of overly burdensome private land use restrictions. If
Amateur Radio is to succeed in this effort, it is going to take all of us
working together."