REMINDER: PLEASE PLEASE DON'T FORGET TO WRITE TO SUPPORT HR462
- Subject: WEAVER'S WORDS -- PLEASE WRITE YOUR REPRESENTATIVE
Dear ARRL member,
Please don't forget to write your US Representative!
All amateurs are urgently requested to write to their US
Representative. 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. Your letter will help move the bill to the floor of the
Your letter when added to those of many others will be the first
critical step in getting this bill passed. Your letter counts. As few
as 10-15 letters in support of a non-controversial bill of this type is
often enough to get a Representative to co-sponsor it. Obviously, the
more letters the better.
To learn the name and address of your US Representative, you can 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.
You may also go to http://www.house.gov/. Type your ZIP+4 in the boxes
in the upper left corner and the ID of your Representative will come
up. In most instances, you can click on his/her name to get to his web
site. At the web site, click on CONTACT and you will get to an area
where you can send an e-mail.
After adding the identification information the site requests, you can
paste a copy of the message you wish to send to him. Have your message
prepared before getting to the CONTACT site, copy it from the program
you used to prepare it and paste it in the CONTACt area.
Please send a copy of the letter to Janet Janet.Worthington@...
and one to me. Janet is our contact person at the Government Relations
firm we retain. It is very useful to this firm to have copies of
letters we send to Congressmen during visits to their DC offices.
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. It is a shorter
version of the letter I distributed earlier and will add a bit more
variety to the mail our Congressmen receive.
If you send the letter by US Mail, please copy add the name and address
of your Representative. Also add your name and address.
Modify the letter to personalize it if you have time, sign it and send
it -- soon.
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 and support passage
within the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Telecommunications and
the Internet Subcommittee, of H.R. 462, 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
BPL utilizes electric power lines to serve as conductors of
broadband signals. Unfortunately, because the 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 has only been deployed 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 no infrastructure is needed for it to communicate, the
amateur radio service 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 operations. Fourteen
states utilize a similar frequency range for state police operations,
and 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 myself, 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
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
Thanks for your help. Please feel free to ask any questions.
LACs and LAAs please help spread this letter and encourage all amateurs
to send it to their US Representatives. Tnx to everyone who has taken
this step. Tnx to everyone who has written.
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!
ARRL Great Lakes Division
Director: James Weaver, K8JE
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