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Write to Support HR 462

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  • Bill
    All: There is a Call to Action being posted web wide. Well, at least in Michigan. Jim, K8JE has asked us to write letters to our US House of
    Message 1 of 1 , May 31, 2007
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      All:

      There is a "Call to Action" being posted web wide. Well, at least in
      Michigan. Jim, K8JE has asked us to write letters to our US House of
      Representatives Congressman to highlight an issue important to amateur
      radio. I've taken the liberty of copying his message below.

      My Congressman:
      Rep. Peter Hoekstra
      2234 Rayburn House Office Building
      Washington DC 20515
      Tel: 202-225-4401
      http://www.house.gov/hoekstra/

      I don't know if the Congressional boundaries are changed around
      Muskegon. I suspect so because the Honorable Peter Hoekstra is a
      Republican and Muskegon has a high concentration of Democrats. So
      please insure your letter is delivered to your Congressman and not mine.

      I'll likely send a paper letter although the task can be easily
      accomplished with email. My personal choice.

      Please take a moment to assist. Each of our letters will make a
      difference. You do not need to be an ARRL member to have your voice
      heard and message make a difference.

      73

      Bill, AB8SC

      Message follows:

      Dear ARRL member,

      Now Is The Time For All Good Hams To Come To The Aid Of Their Radio
      Service!

      All amateurs are urgently requested to write letters to their US
      Representative. These letters are to ask them to cosponsor HR 462, the
      current bill in the US House of Representatives that would protect
      Amateur Radio from interference from unlicensed devices -- e.g. various
      Part 15 devices and BPL. The bill is in Committee and your letter will
      help move it to the floor of the House.

      Your letter and the letters of thousands of other amateurs will be the
      first step in a series of actions to get this bill passed. Subsequent
      actions will involve liaison members of the ARRL Legislative Action
      Program, but we first need to get as many sponsors while it is in
      Committee as possible. The more letters each Representative receives,
      the better.

      To learn the name and address of your US Representative, go to
      www.arrl.org and click on "Members Only" at the top of the screen. If
      you have already registered (free) to access Members Only, you will see
      the names and addresses of your US Representative and US Senators on
      the left of the Members Only screen. If Members Only does not fully
      open for you, simply register on the opening screen to use. This will
      give you access to it.

      Mail your letter only to your US Representative. Do not mail it to
      either of your US Senators. The bill is only in the US House of
      Representatives and not in the US Senate. We are working to have a
      bill introduced in the Senate, later.

      I have pasted a draft letter for you to use, below. Please copy the
      letter and add the name and address of the Representative. Also add
      your name and address.

      Modify the letter to personalize it if you have time, sign it and
      send.

      Each time we discuss sending letters to Congressmen, several people
      offer suggestions on how this should best be done -- by US Mail, FAX,
      e-mail, to the Washington, DC office, to a local office, etc. The
      answer to the best way to get mail to them depends on the individual.
      I will leave it to you to determine how you wish to send the letter.

      The main thing is to send it . . . and to do this fairly soon.\\

      Also, if possible, please send a copy of your letter to Dave Sumner,
      K1ZZ, 225 Main St., Newington, CT 06111 or to k1zz@.... Why?
      These copies are forward to our representative in Washington who uses
      them as proof that the "voters back home" are interested In the bill.
      Thanks.

      The draft letter is:

      ------------------

      The Honorable __________
      United States House of Representatives
      ____________ House Office Building
      Washington, DC 20515

      Dear Congressman/woman ___________:

      On behalf of nearly 700,000 federally licensed Amateur Radio operators
      across the nation, I wish to bring to your attention an issue that
      affects emergency communication operations. As a voter in your
      district, I request that you become a cosponsor of H.R. 462, and
      support its passage within the House Energy and Commerce Committee,
      Telecommunications and the Internet Subcommittee. This is the
      "Emergency Amateur Radio Interference Protection Act." This
      bill urges the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to conduct a
      very targeted but comprehensive evaluation of "broadband over
      power line" (BPL) systems that may interfere with public safety
      and other licensed radio services.

      BPL utilizes electric power lines as conductors of broadband signals.
      Unfortunately, because power lines are not shielded, they also act as
      antennas and radiate signals into the air. These radiated signals
      interfere with radio receivers tuned to the same frequency range. BPL
      is deployed only to a very limited extent, but amateur radio operators
      and several state public safety commissions report they are already
      experiencing severe interference that the FCC has been unable or
      unwilling to correct.

      Because the amateur radio service needs no infrastructure for it to
      communicate, it is the only 100 percent fail-safe emergency
      communication system in the world. Interference from BPL emissions is
      significantly disrupting this capability.

      The impact on emergency communications extends beyond amateur radio.
      Fourteen states utilize a similar frequency range for state police
      operations. Nine of these states use it as their primary radio band.
      The interference concern has also been echoed by the National
      Association of Broadcasters (NAB), the Association of Public-Safety
      Communications Officials-International (APCO), and the National Public
      Safety Telecommunications Council (NPSTC).

      In deploying broadband, it is vital that further understanding and
      causation of interference be studied by the FCC. H.R. 462 will
      accomplish this goal, by allowing the FCC to ascertain what additional
      rules governing BPL systems, if any, should be adopted by the FCC in
      order to reduce the interference potential to a reasonably low level.
      The FCC has authority to study this issue, as it is the primary agency
      responsible for adopting rules in BPL systems. Unfortunately, the 2004
      rules governing BPL are not sufficient to reduce the probability of
      harmful interference to reasonable levels. This non-controversial
      study language was included as part of H.R. 5252, the Communications
      Opportunity, Promotion and Enhancement Act (COPE) of 2006.

      Amateur radio operators, like me, are not opposed to broadband
      services. On the contrary, we usually tend to be early adopters of new
      technology. However, BPL represents a significant potential
      interference source for radio services using certain frequency ranges.
      Unlike BPL, other methods of providing broadband Internet services to
      consumers, such as cable, DSL, wireless and Fiber to the Home, do not
      pollute the radio spectrum.

      It is imperative that there is a comprehensive evaluation of the
      interference potential of BPL to public safety services and other
      licensed radio services. The potential impact on public safety
      communications must be taken into consideration. Please cosponsor and
      support passage of H.R. 462, or support its inclusion in a
      comprehensive broadband bill. Thank you for your attention to this
      matter.

      Sincerely,



      Name, Title, Contact Information

      --------------------

      A question: Can non-ARRL members and non-hams write to their US
      Representatives? Certainly. Just be certain the letter reads
      appropriately.

      Thanks for your help. Please feel free to ask any questions.

      LACs and LAAs please stand by. You will be called into action fairly
      soon.

      73,

      Jim

      Jim Weaver, K8JE, Director
      ARRL Great Lakes Division
      5065 Bethany Rd.
      Mason, OH 45040
      E-mail: k8je@...; Tel.: 513-459-0142
      ARRL - The Reason Amateur Radio Is!
      Members - The Reason ARRL Is!

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      Director: James Weaver, K8JE
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