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April 2015

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NEWS FROM YOUR COLORADO SECTION MANAGER 

w1aw-jack
Jack Ciaccia, WMØG

ARRL CO Section Manager

PO Box 21362

Boulder, CO   80308-4362

303-587-0993  (Cell)  

Email: wm0g@arrl.org

WMØG Bio 

ARRL Section Manager Responsibilities

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colorado-map

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2015 ARRL Rocky Mountain Division Convention

The 2015 ARRL Rocky Mountain Division Convention will take place July 31-August 2, 2015 at Ruby’s Inn located a short distance away from gorgeous Bryce Canyon National Park. Carrying on the tradition of quality Division Conventions, the Utah Section (this year’s host) is hard at work planning a great weekend getaway this summer. Among the numerous things to look forward to: Spending a weekend meeting and building relationships with hams from all across Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming; buying and selling amateur radio equipment; ham related competitions and awards; ham license exams; an always special Wouff Hong ceremony; delicious meals; many prizes; technical and non-technical forums; special guest speakers and VIPs; and much more.

Bookmark the Convention’s website (http://utahhamfest.com) where more details will be posted soon. Convention registration will open soon; however be sure to reserve your comfortable room, RV spot, or camping area at Ruby’s Inn before they are all spoken for. Details at http://utahhamfest.com/where-to-stay

We look forward to seeing you in Bryce Canyon for the 2015 ARRL Rocky Mountain Division Convention this summer.

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Amateur Radio Parity Act HR-1301

Gets support from Colorado Representative

May 13, 2015 – I am pleased to report that our Congressional House Representative, Ed Perlmutter (D) from Colorado’s 7th District, today signed on to support HR-1301, otherwise known as the ‘Amateur Radio Parity Act’. Congressman Perlmutter sits on the Science, Space and Technology Committee in Congress. Congressman Perlmutter is now one of about 55 Congressmen from both sides of the aisle who have signed on to support this bill that is so important to the future of amateur radio and its ability to help our citizens in time of disaster.

What will HR 1301 do?

Most importantly, it will ensure that every ham in the US, regardless of the community they live in, will have the opportunity to practice their avocation from their own homes without breaking any rules or fear of reprisal.

If enacted, it would direct the FCC to extend the the reasonable accommodation protections to those amateurs who are living in deed-restricted communities. Known as “CC&Rs” (covenants, conditions and restrictions) these are the prohibitions and limitations placed on properties by builders or homeowner associations (HOAs) which prevent licensed Amateurs from erecting even modest antennas.

The Amateur Radio Parity Act would not give Amateurs “carte blanche” to do whatever they wished. It would require HOAs and other private land use regulations to extend reasonable accommodation to Amateurs wishing to erect antennas.

Now we need to work on getting Congressmen Ken Buck (R-04), Mike Coffman (R-06), Douglas Lamborn (R-05), Jared Polis (D-02), Scott Tipton (R-03) and Congresswoman Diana DeGette (D-01) to sign on as well. So, if you are a constituent of any one of these legislators, please drop them a note or call them or visit them to tell them of your concern.

Also, please drop a note, email or call Congressman Perlmutter thanking him for his support on this important Bill. Especially those of you in his District (Jefferson County). His contact info is:

Office: 303-459-4729
Fax: 303-233-3530
info@perlmutterforcolorado.com

Mailing Address:
3440 Youngfield St. #264
Wheat Ridge, CO 80033

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Colorado’s PRB-1 Bill

Colorado’s PRB-1 Bill – SB 15-041 presented by Senator Chris Holbert and Rep. Kevin Van Winkle, passed House and Senate Government committee unanimously without amendments. The Bill went on to a second and third reading and again passed unanimously without amendments. The Bill was signed into Law on March 13, 2015 by Governor Hickenlooper. Special thanks to Robert B. Wareham NØESQ, our ARRL Colorado State Government Liaison for getting the Bill written and introduced by Senators Holbert and Van Winkle as well as testifying in committee.

Summarized History for Bill Number SB15-041

(The date the bill passed to the committee of the whole reflects the date the bill passed out of committee.)

01/07/2015 – Introduced In Senate – Assigned to Local Government
01/20/2015 – Senate Committee on Local Government Refer Unamended – Consent Calendar to Senate Committee of the Whole
01/23/2015 – Senate Second Reading Passed – No Amendments
01/26/2015 – Senate Third Reading Passed – No Amendments
01/26/2015 – Introduced In House – Assigned to Local Government
02/12/2015 – House Committee on Local Government Refer Unamended to House Committee of the Whole
02/18/2015 – House Second Reading Laid Over Daily – No Amendments
02/19/2015 – House Second Reading Passed – No Amendments
02/20/2015 – House Third Reading Passed – No Amendments
03/04/2015 – Sent to the Governor

The full text of this legislation can be found HERE

sb-041

Here is the bill formulated by our ARRL Colorado Section Government Liaison, Robert Wareham, NØESQ that has been passed by the Colorado Senate and recommended without amendments and will now be presented shortly to the House for their approval. Thanks to Senator Chris Hobart (R) and Rep. Kevin Van Winkle (R) House District 43. The ARRL Legal Counsel, Chris Imlay has also presented legal case precedents to be introduced as well. This should help hams considering tower installation to have the state adoption of PRB-1 pre-empt onerous local city and county antenna rulings. This will allow PRB-1 to be introduced and decided at County Court proceedings versus having to be brought before the much more expensive Federal Court to be argued. Similar bills like this have been passed in 31 other states, so far.

First Regular Session
Seventieth General Assembly
STATE OF COLORADO
INTRODUCED
LLS NO. 15-0339.01 Gregg Fraser x:4325
SENATE BILL 15-041
Senate Committees House Committees
Local Government
SENATE SPONSORSHIP
Holbert,
HOUSE SPONSORSHIP
Van Winkle,
A BILL FOR AN ACT CONCERNING A REQUIREMENT THAT LOCAL GOVERNMENTS REGULATE
AMATEUR RADIO COMMUNICATIONS IN ACCORDANCE WITH AN EXISTING FEDERAL PREEMPTION ESTABLISHED BY THE FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION.
Bill Summary
Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced and does not reflect any amendments that may be subsequently adopted. If this bill passes third reading in the house of introduction, a bill summary that applies to the reengrossed version of this bill will be available at http://www.leg.state.co.us/billsummaries.
The federal communications commission (FCC) currently limits the authority of local governments to regulate amateur radio communications. Any local government regulation must be based on health, safety, or aesthetic considerations, must be crafted to reasonably accommodate amateur radio communications, and must represent the minimum practicable regulation to accomplish a legitimate purpose of the local government. This federal preemption is contained in a memorandum opinion and order from the FCC known as “PRB-1″. The bill specifies that no local government shall enact or enforce an ordinance or resolution regulating amateur radio antennas that fails to comply with the restrictions contained in the PRB-1.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Colorado:
SECTION 1. In Colorado Revised Statutes, add 29-20-109 as follows:
29-20-109. Local government regulation of amateur radio antennas.
NO LOCAL GOVERNMENT SHALL ENACT OR ENFORCE AN  ORDINANCE OR RESOLUTION REGULATING AMATEUR RADIO ANTENNAS THAT FAILS TO CONFORM TO THE LIMITED PREEMPTION SET FORTH IN THE  MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER PRB-1 ENTITLED “FEDERAL PREEMPTION OF STATE AND LOCAL REGULATIONS PERTAINING TO AMATEUR RADIO FACILITIES”, 101 FCC 2d 952 (1985), ISSUED BY THE FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION AND FURTHER CODIFIED IN 47 CFR 97.15 (b). AN ORDINANCE OR RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY A LOCAL GOVERNMENT THAT REGULATES AMATEUR RADIO ANTENNAS SHALL CONFORM TO THE LIMITED FEDERAL PREEMPTION WHICH PROVIDES THAT LOCAL GOVERNMENT REGULATIONS INVOLVING THE PLACEMENT, SCREENING, OR HEIGHT OF ANTENNAS MUST:
 (a) BE BASED ON HEALTH, SAFETY, OR AESTHETIC CONSIDERATIONS;
(b) BE CRAFTED TO REASONABLY ACCOMMODATE AMATEUR COMMUNICATIONS; AND
(c) REPRESENT THE MINIMUM PRACTICABLE REGULATION
REQUIRED TO ACCOMPLISH THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT’S LEGITIMATE PURPOSE.
SECTION 2. Act subject to petition – effective date. This act takes effect at 12:01 a.m. on the day following the expiration of the  ninety-day period after final adjournment of the general assembly (August 5, 2015, if adjournment sine die is on May 6, 2015); except that, if a referendum petition is filed pursuant to section 1 (3) of article V of the state constitution against this act or an item, section, or part of this act within such period, then the act, item, section, or part will not take effect unless approved by the people at the general election to be held in November 2016 and, in such case, will take effect on the date of the official declaration of the vote thereon by the governor.
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Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015 introduced

Call to Action

The Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015 (H.R.1301) has been introduced in the US House of Representatives. The measure would direct the FCC to extend its rules relating to reasonable accommodation of Amateur Service communications to private land use restrictions. US Rep Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) introduced the bill on March 4 with 12 of the original co-sponsors from last year’s H.R. 4969 legislation immediately signing on.

H.R. 1301 would require the FCC to amend its Part 97 Amateur Service rules to apply the three-part test of the PRB-1 federal preemption policy to include homeowners’ association regulations and deed restrictions, often referred to as “covenants, conditions, and restrictions” (CC&Rs). At present, PRB-1 only applies to state and local zoning laws and ordinances. The FCC has been reluctant to extend the same legal protections to include such private land-use agreements without direction from Congress.

H.R. 1301 has been referred to the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Rep Greg Walden, W7EQI (R-OR), chairs that panel’s Communications and Technology Subcommittee, which will consider the measure.

This is a call to action for all ARRL members to once again contact your US House member and ask them to sign on to the bill as a co-sponsor.

ARRL staff, officers, and board members are planning to personally visit members of Congress and their staff in Washington DC to convey the importance of this legislation and seek their support as co-sponsors. An equally strong grassroots effort from each Representatives’ constituents (that is, every ARRL member and ham back at home) is the other much needed part of the equation for H.R. 1301 to gain the visibility and support it needs to move through the political process on Capitol Hill.

To learn who your Representative is and obtain their contact information (email or mail), please visit http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/ and enter your zip code.

Additional details about H.R.1301 including talking points, a list of current co-sponsors, sample email or letter text, and more can be found at www.arrl.org/hr-1301

If you wish to express your support for H.R. 1301 to your Representative by signed letter, please read the sections pertaining to letter writing and delivery on the ARRL web link provided above carefully.

(ARRL is currently engaging members and staff in the US Senate to develop support for a companion bill. Please do not reach out to your Senators quite yet.)

Finally, if you happen to know your Representative or Senators (or any of their staff) personally, please contact Brian Mileshosky N5ZGT immediately.

ARRL Rocky Mountain Division
Director: Brian P Mileshosky, N5ZGT
n5zgt@arrl.org

What will HR 1301 do?

Most importantly, it will ensure that every ham in the US, regardless of the community they live in, will have the opportunity to practice their avocation from their own homes without breaking any rules or fear of reprisal.

If enacted, it would direct the FCC to extend the the reasonable accommodation protections to those amateurs who are living in deed-restricted communities.  Known as “CC&Rs” (covenants, conditions and restrictions) these are the prohibitions and limitations placed on properties by builders or homeowner associations (HOAs) which prevent licensed Amateurs from erecting even modest antennas.

The Amateur Radio Parity Act would not give Amateurs “carte blanche” to do whatever they wished. It would require HOAs and other private land use regulations to extend reasonable accommodation to Amateurs wishing to erect antennas.

Here are the names and addresses of our legislators here in Colorado:

Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO)
1433 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: 202-225-2161

Sen. Michael Bennett (D-CO)
458 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Phone: 202-224-5852

Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO)
B40B Dirksen Senate Office Bldg
Washington, DC 20510
Phone: 202-224-5941

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SAMPLE LETTER

DATE

CONGRESSPERSON NAME

CONGRESSPERSON ADDRESS

Dear Representative _____________:

I am a constituent in your District and I want to bring an issue to your attention. I am a federally licensed Amateur Radio operator, one of nearly three-quarters of a million licensees of the Federal Communications Commission in the United States.

We provide communications support for, and participate in public service events on behalf of our communities. During and in the aftermath of disasters and emergencies, when other forms of communications are unavailable, we provide communications for first responders and Federal, state and local governmental agencies and non-governmental agencies, including the Red Cross and Salvation Army; for the United States Military through the Military Auxiliary Radio System (MARS); and to our neighbors when communications systems are overloaded or fail. Radio Amateurs contribute to the future of telecommunications as we participate in the development of innovative technology in this digital age. Amateur Radio is non-commercial, and we provide our services at no charge to anyone.

We cannot do any of these things, however, unless we can erect an outdoor antenna at our residences.

Recently, a bi-partisan Bill, H.R. 1301 – “The Amateur Radio Parity Act”, was introduced by Congressman Adam Kinzinger (IL-16) with Congressman Joe Courtney (CT-02) and eleven additional original co-sponsors.  HR 1301 directs the FCC to extend their existing PRB-1 regulations of “reasonable accommodation” of Amateur Radio communications to include private land use regulators. This would afford us the ability to negotiate with homeowner’s associations in residential developments. Private land use regulations routinely include restrictions that completely preclude Amateur Radio communications operators from installing any type of outdoor antenna system. The “reasonable accommodation” policy has for 30 years applied to municipal zoning ordinances. This Bill would extend the policy to operators living under private land use restrictions. The FCC has asked Congress for guidance in this area and this Bill provides it.

As your constituent, I am asking that you support the bill by signing-on as a cosponsor. Please contact Rep. Kinzinger’s office to do so. If you have any questions, please contact ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio, attention Dan Henderson, at 860.594.0236. Thank you.

Sincerely,

LICENSEE NAME & CALL

LICENSEE ADDRESS

Q. Where should I mail my signed letter to my Congressperson?

A. Once you have your letter written and signed they can be mailed to ARRL for hand-delivery to your Representative’s office.  The mailing address is:

ARRL

ATTN: Legislative Action Letters

225 Main St

Newington, CT 06111

Q. Why are we asked to send letters to the ARRL Consultant to deliver to our members of Congress?  Why should I do that instead of contacting my member directly?

A. There are several reasons.  First, when letters from constituents are hand-delivered to a Congressional office, it gives our Washington team the opportunity to have some direct “face time” with the Congressperson and/or their key staff. Hand delivering a stack of letters supporting a bill makes a greater impact than having those letters trickle in through the US mail system.

Because of security concerns, when you mail a letter to your member of Congress, it is automatically directed to a warehouse in Maryland for security screening, including tests for possible dangerous substances.  This can delay delivery of even routine letters by up to six weeks.

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5 Year old passes Technician Class Exam

Recently, 5 year old Colton Ragsdale became the youngest ham in Colorado… He is now officially licensed as KEØCRD. He also has become a Life Member of the ARRL!! Check out this video from our local NBC News Affiliate KUSA, Channel 9 in Denver…

Colton Ragsdale KEØCRD Interview

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Youth in Amateur Radio

The August issue of WorldRadio Magazine has a great article featuring Carole Perry’s (WB2MGP) Youth in Amateur Radio Forum this year at the Dayton HAMvention. This was Carole’s 25th year of presenting the Youth Forum and for that I congratulate her. Once again, one of the Youth Forum presenter’s was from the BARC Juniors (Boulder Amateur Radio Club). Gary Bailey, KDØTRO, age 10 was the youngest speaker at the Forum and he WOW’d them with his presentation on “Radio’s and Components I have built and tested”. See the link below on this year’s Youth Forum and the talented young hams.

 World Radio Magazine – August 2013

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The Internet hasn’t buried amateur radio, but some wonder:

Will young people keep the hobby alive?

Ham radio alive and well in Boulder County

By: Tony Kindelspire – Longmont Times-Call 

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AN EXCELLENT HOMEBREW BOOK

There is an excellent book called “From Crystal Sets to Sideband” written by long time Boulder Amateur Radio Club member, Frank Harris, KØIYE in 2002 and last updated in 2011. It’s a wonderful work of more than 400 pages starting with basic electricity working all the way up to design considerations for homebrew sideband rigs and beyond. Full of great photos, diagrams and humorous cartoons, it’s an entertaining read as well as a great reference sourcebook…and it’s FREE! KØIYE graciously and generously donated it to the public. Thanks to Four State QRP and QRPARCI it’s available to be downloaded and printed freely at http://www.wa0itp.com/crystalsetsssb.html 

A very nice write up about the author, Frank, KØIYE appeared in this World Radio Magazine Article in May 2011

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ARRL Activities, Hamfests & Conventions 

Links to websites belonging to the above events are found on the Rocky Mountain Division site: http://www.RockyMountainDivision.org 
If you’re organizing a Hamfest, convention, or tailgate we encourage you to apply for ARRL-sanctioning. Sanctioning contains many benefits, and details can be found at http://www.arrl.org/hamfest-convention-application

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DENVER RADIO CLUB COLORADO NET LIST 
is on line

The DRC posts a complete list of local ham nets on their site. The link is: http://www.w0tx.org/netlist.htm

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CURRENT SOLAR PREDICTIONS

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In case you were wondering….

The Boulder A-Index Explained:

The geomagnetic A-index is derived from the K-index, which quantifies disturbances in the horizontal component of earth’s magnetic field, using a 0-9 integer scale.  K and A indices are indicators of ionospheric radio propagation conditions.

A value of 1 on the K-index indicates calm and 5 or more indicates a geomagnetic storm.  The K-index is derived from the maximum fluctuations of horizontal components observed on a magnetometer, during a three-hour interval.

The A-index provides an average level for geomagnetic activity.  Because K scale magnetometer fluctuations are non-linear, quasi-logarithmic, it is not meaningful to take averages for a set of K-indices.  Instead, each K is converted back into a linear scale called the equivalent three hourly range “a”-index (lower case “a”).  The daily A-index is an average of eight “a”-indices.

For many years, local hams had access to an A-index published for Boulder, Colorado.  Although the formal “Boulder A-Index” is no longer officially published, the magnetometer used to provide it is still operational.  Below, are web links to current Boulder A-index data.

12-Hour Boulder Magnetometer Monitor (USGS)

Planetary K index

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One Response to Home

  1. Ulrich Hauser says:

    Thanks Jack for all the help. Especially in crisis but also throughout the year as a steady companion of knowledge.
    Ueli HB9TTI

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