UPDATE: Former N.H. Rep. Bill Ohm, W1OHM, writes:
“Nice work on getting 100 hams to go on the record in support. This is very unusual in committee and got noticed. … I think the committee decision will weigh the value of having trained radio operators ready to be deployed in an emergency. The large number of hams submitting their support reinforces their interest in public service. … I expect the bill will be referred to a subcommittee to work on the concerns. If a quick comprise can be reached, then they can draft a committee amendment for that compromise and send it to the full House for a vote. Otherwise it will be retained in committee for work later in the year (best case) or simply voted out of committee as ITL, Inexpedient to Legislate. It will then be voted down by the full Legislature in quick order.”
This bill would allow:
• Antennas similar or identical to those for satellite TV dishes, broadcast TV, or broadband internet.
• Single wire or minimally visible antennas,
• Antennas raised only in darkness,
• Antennas no higher than 33 feet (i.e., lower than the roof line), and
• The use of a flag pole as an antenna.
It would only allow antennas on land where the homeowner already has the\ right to exclude others, and it requires safe construction, with municipal approval.
Here’s the procedure to testify in favor of the Amateur Radio bill, HB 313, being heard in the Commerce Committee today.
• Select the date of the hearing as January 26
• Select the committee as “Commerce” (first pick)
• Select the bill, H.B. 313
• Select “I am a member of the public”
• Select, “I am representing myself”
• Indicate your position, “I support this bill”
• Enter name, phone, and email
Decide if you want to testify (not required). If you do, speak for no more than one minute. It’s OK to just say it’s important for emergency communications to be able to communicate, and you need a simple antenna for that. And that antenna is now prohibited.
SUBMIT THE FORM BEFORE 12:30 PM TODAY. This puts your position into the public record.
It’s very important to show support from the amateur radio community. A similar bill has been in Committee before, and has died for lack of sufficient support. Consequently the Committee will be skeptical. Opponents, like the CAI (condo association lobby) will show up and testify against this bill.
Fred Hopengarten, K1VR
New England Division
Phil Temples, K9HI
ARRL Vice Director
New England Division
“The Amateur Radio community, students, scanner enthusiasts, space fans and others have been eagerly awaiting the launch of the most novel satellite ever to orbit Earth. SuitSat-1 will transmit its voice message “This is SuitSat-1 RS0RS!” in several languages plus telemetry and an SSTV image on an eight-minute cycle as it orbits Earth. The three batteries powering the satellite are expected to last about a week, and SuitSat-1 should re-enter Earth’s atmosphere after several weeks of circling the globe. and SuitSat-1 has piqued the imagination of the news media over the past couple of weeks. In addition to articles in The New York Times, the Houston Chronicle and Associated Press, National Public Radio, Fox News, CNN, Readers Digest, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, MSNBC and others also produced broadcast or cable news reports. A magazine article is set to appear in Aviation Week and Space Technology.”
-Thanks, Rosalie White, K1STO, ARRL ARISS US Delegate
We encourage all New England clubs and groups to participate in the 2021 Winter Field Day, January 30-31, 2021. From WinterFieldDay.com:
Winter Field Day Association (WFDA) is a dedicated group of Amateur Radio Operators who believe that emergency communications in a winter environment is just as important as the preparations and practice that is done each summer but with some additional unique operational concerns.
We believe as do those entities of ARRL Organizations like ARES & RACES that maintaining your operational skills should not be limited to fair weather scenarios. The addition of Winter Field Day will enhance those already important skills of those that who generously volunteer their time and equipment to these organizations. This is why WFD is open to all licensed amateur radio operators worldwide.
Disasters are unpredictable by nature and can strike when you least expect them. WFDA’s goal is to help enhance your skills and ready you for all environmental conditions found in the US and Canada during the spring, summer, fall and winter Preparedness is the key to a professional and timely response during any event and this is what local and state authorities are expecting when they reach out to the emergency service groups that offer their services.
If you are serious about emergency communications as we are; we welcome you to join us for our yearly event. We are sure you will find this event a pleasant change and challenge to that of a normal summer time field day.
Please plan to attend Thursday’s January 21 Zoom presentation.
10:00 PM AST / 9:00 PM EST / 8:00 PM CST / 7:00 PM MST / 6:00 PM PST / 5:00 PM AKST / 4:00 PM HST
Topic: Winlink Radio interfaces
Speaker/Presenter: Scott Currie NS7C
This meeting will be OPEN for all to attend. Please feel free to invite others.
Hey folks: These Zoom sessions left open after the presentation.
After the Zoom presentation has been closed, sign back into Zoom to visit.
- This meeting will be recorded. By participating you consent to being recorded.
- Please change your display name to Your First Name, Call Sign and Location, e.g. Dan K7REX Idaho.
- Please stay muted until ready to speak. Your space bar works like a PTT for unmuting
- You may ask questions in chat; please stay on topic while using chat.
Meeting ID: 212 888 4758
BLOOMBERG NEWS–January 17, 2021, 10:11 AM ET
Licensed amateur and personal radio services shouldn’t be used to coordinate criminal acts, the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau warned after reports that some people were looking to radios as an alternative to social media platforms, which are being monitored by law enforcement following the deadly Jan. 6 raid on the U.S. Capitol.
“The Bureau reminds amateur licensees that they are prohibited from transmitting ‘communications intended to facilitate a criminal act’ or ‘messages encoded for the purpose of obscuring their meaning,” the agency said in a statement Sunday.
The licensees, which would include Citizens Band radios, Family Radio Service walkie-talkies, and General Mobile Radio Service, would face fines, seizure of their equipment and possible criminal prosecution.
See also: FCC Enforcement Advisory
The 63rd Vermont QSO Party will take place during the first full weekend of February 2021.
It will run over a 48-hour period beginning at 0000 UTC Saturday February 6 and ending 2400 UTC Sunday February 7. In local time, this corresponds to a start time of 7:00 PM EST Friday night February 5th and an end time of 7 PM Sunday night February 7th.
The Vermont QSO Party provides the opportunity for Amateur Radio Operators to contact and exchange QSO information with Vermont Amateur Radio operators. All licensed amateur radio operators are invited to participate. Stations outside Vermont work Vermont stations. Stations within Vermont work everyone.
Please download The Official 2021 Vermont QSO Party Rules for specific rules.
Connecticut Section Emergency Coordinator Mike Walters, W8ZY, has scheduled a virtual Connecticut state ARES meeting via Microsoft Teams for Sunday January 17, 2021 from 8 PM – 9 PM. Mike will open the meeting around 7:30 PM so everyone can have a chance to log in.
The January, 2021 Rhode Island Section Manager Report is now available at <https://nediv.arrl.org/rhode-island-january-2021-activity-report/>.