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rover67
03-29-2011, 09:45 AM
http://www.usatoday.com/money/media/2011-03-29-hamradio29_ST_N.htm?csp=usat.me

Why would they change all this up? Seems like it'd be a humongous pain to reprogram radios for emergency folks.

DaveInDenver
03-29-2011, 09:59 AM
ARRL's page about it.

http://www.arrl.org/hr-607

The intention is to create essentially a nationwide emergency WiFi. Seems to me to be redundant because most established public safety already have data services and so why would they want to add another network? They are already moving to standardize on spectrum in the 800MHz band anyway.

BTW, it's not just hams who are worried, there is 700MHz spectrum being reallocated. It's moving some VHF public service up to UHF.

http://www.rrmediagroup.com/newsArticle.cfm?news_id=6814

Be sure to write your Congressman to oppose it. Not that it will matter, the spectrum is too valuable in auction to allow us to keep using for 'free'.

Hulk
03-30-2011, 01:02 AM
Be sure to write your Congressman to oppose it.

I'm game. Got a letter template I can start with?

DaveInDenver
03-30-2011, 07:00 AM
Dear Rep. DeGette,

I write to you this morning to ask that you vote NO on HR 607. I am particularly concerned that this bill reallocates very important frequency spectrum from the Amateur Radio Service bands. As an avid ham radio enthusiast, I find this unacceptable.

In Colorado, we use these frequencies for many purposes beyond simple two-way conversation. The impacted frequencies are very widely used for communications in remote backcountry areas and by ham clubs assisting with communications during large events such as the MS150 and other organized bicycle events, marathons and the like. These frequencies are heavily used as part of the volunteer amateur radio emergency services called ARES and RACES. This reallocation also impacts the frequencies used by amateur television that have no alternative spectrum elsewhere.

Ham radio is a hobby with long traditions of cooperation, inclusiveness and education in important communication and technical skills that we as a society must encourage. So I urge you to please vote NO on HR 607.

Regards,
Name
Address
Call Sign

DaveInDenver
03-30-2011, 07:02 AM
BTW, these spectrum grabs are exactly why people encourage you to think beyond being 2m appliance operators. There's lots more to the hobby than just channelized 2m FM and if we don't use it, we lose it! It's also why I personally try and discourage less than upstanding use (unlicensed ops, freebanding, etc.), those things reduce our political leverage.

CO Hunter
03-30-2011, 06:05 PM
Thanks for the template, my son and I will both send letters.

To me this is analogous to trail closures.

Hulk
04-04-2011, 10:39 PM
I emailed Mike Coffman here in the 6th District.

Dave, thanks for the letter template. I changed it only a little bit.

Dr. Congressman Coffman,

I am writing to you this evening to ask that you vote NO on HR 607. I am particularly concerned that this bill reallocates very important frequency spectrum from the Amateur Radio Service bands. As an avid ham radio enthusiast, I find this to be a terrible idea.

In Colorado, we use these frequencies for many purposes beyond simple two-way conversation. The impacted frequencies are very widely used for communications in remote backcountry areas and by ham clubs assisting with communications during large events such as the MS150 and other organized bicycle events, marathons and the like. These frequencies are heavily used as part of the volunteer amateur radio emergency services called ARES and RACES. This reallocation also impacts the frequencies used by amateur television that have no alternative spectrum elsewhere.

Ham radio is a hobby with long traditions of cooperation, inclusiveness and education in important communication and technical skills that we as a society must encourage. Amateur radio operators are granted small slivers of bandwidth, but we use them frequently, actively and for the good of society. I urge you to please vote NO on HR 607.

Best Regards,
Matt Farr
WØRDY

Bruce Miller
04-11-2011, 08:14 PM
Go to: http://www.arrl.org/sample-letters where you will find background information on H.R. 607, a sample letter, and instructions on how to submit your letter. Don't mail a letter to your representative. Due to security measures in place on Capitol Hill, it takes them many months to get our letters and even more time to reply. H.R. 607 requires the auctioning of 65% of the 70cm band to business users within 10 years of passage

Mendocino
04-11-2011, 11:55 PM
The FCC is also assisting in a spectrum arbitrage play facilitated by some NY financiers via a company called LightSquared. If they are successful they will screw GPS in and around urban areas. Check this out:
http://www.saveourgps.org/:mad:

DaveInDenver
04-12-2011, 07:29 AM
The LightSquared mess is partially due to a change the FCC made to allow ground augmentation for satellite services (note that XM-Sirius also heavily utilize this rule change). LightSquared is using it to put in a nation-wide mobile broadband service in the L band, 1525-1559 MHz. GPS L1 sits at 1575MHz.

The problem lies in the receivers, in particular commercial and consumer GPS receivers will not be able to tolerate the interference and will end up with overloaded front ends. The military units might be OK due to their anti-jamming tolerance (this is more or less broadcast jamming) and future consumer designs might be able to tolerate it (at greater cost). Both are presumptions though, filtering might end up not being practical.

To put some numbers to it, a terrestrial GPS receiver at sea level sees about a -160dBW signal, which is below S1 on a typical HF radio and almost at the receiver noise figure of even the best HF radios (this is the incident, natural noise of the electronics of your radio with the RX antenna grounded). The LightSquared terrestrial stations will be I understand as much as 15kW, which if true would represent somewhere around +40dBW in the near field. Your radio at S9 is -105dBW, so that would be called 'S9+145dB'. Not only will it kill any reception, it's probably going to just blow the receivers out. Another analogy, your GPS signal is like trying to see a LED flashlight next to a Coors Field flood light.

It's really LightSquared's problem as they are going to be spattering and are the interfering party. But with tacit FCC approval. It's not that the spectrum must be shared, it's that the ground stations are going to essentially be GPS black holes and are being pursued even though the FCC technical office and most of the industry knows this will likely end up in problems.

Also realize that this is primarily going to be a problem only close to the ground stations, of course LightSquared is planning 40,000 of them. None-the-less, if you're a few miles away it should not be a major consumer problem. The ones of concern would be permanent or semi-permanent ones located close, such as the FAA WAAS systems for example.

http://www.gpsworld.com/gnss-system/news/lightsquaredgps-interference-saga-wheels-grinding-11472

http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/jsp_includes/articlePrint.jsp?headLine=Amid%20Jamming%20Worries,%20Tests%20For%20GPS%20Receivers&storyID=news/awst/2011/04/11/AW_04_11_2011_p26-307552.xml

http://www.gpsworld.com/gnss-system/lockheedmartinreporttofcc-11473

http://www.gpsworld.com/gnss-system/news/data-shows-disastrous-gps-jamming-fcc-approved-broadcaster-11029

rover67
04-12-2011, 07:35 AM
I'll work up a letter tonight, thanks for the feedback folks.

Nice to understand it now.

Hulk
04-25-2011, 08:24 AM
Karie and I both wrote to our rep, Mike Coffman. He must prefer women constituents to men -- she received a response, but I did not. Here it is:

Dear Ms. Farr:

Thank you very much for contacting me regarding broadband access for first responders. I appreciate your thoughts on this issue and the opportunity to respond.

As you know, House Resolution 607, the Broadband for First Responders Act of 2011, was introduced by Representative Peter King on February 10, 2011. This bill has been referred to the House Energy and Commerce Committee where it awaits further consideration. The legislation amends the Communications Act of 1934, to increase the electromagnetic spectrum allocation for public safety services. This increase is to be 10 megahertz, and be accomplished with a decrease in commercial use of the spectrum.

A contentious provision in the legislation pertains to a proposed auction of spectrum space. The 420 - 440 megahertz band, which has traditionally been used by amateur radio operators, is included in this auction.

H.R. 607 is still being considered by the Energy and Commerce Committee and could further be amended. Based on what I have learned about this legislation, I intend to oppose it should it come before the House for passage.

Thank you again for taking the time to contact me. For more information on my work in Congress on your behalf, please sign up for my newsletter at https://forms.house.gov/coffman/webforms/enews.html (https://forms.house.gov/coffman/webforms/enews.html).

Sincerely,

Michael Coffman
Member of Congress

DaveInDenver
04-25-2011, 09:48 AM
That's a great response from Rep Coffman because it's obvious that he (or his staff) read the email and is responding specifically to the issue. I mean, seriously, that's a detailed and on-topic reply.

CO Hunter
04-25-2011, 08:44 PM
That is a great response. I got nothing more than an auto reply from Lamborn and that was March 30th.

"Thank you for your email. Your concerns and questions are important to me, and I will be back in touch with you shortly with an answer. As always, you are welcome to contact my staff for further assistance in Colorado Springs at (719) 520-0055 or in Washington, D.C. at (202) 225-4422.

Sincerely,

Doug Lamborn
Member of Congress"

xodeuce
04-25-2011, 11:30 PM
Here's what I got from my representative:

Thank you for contacting me to express your views on H.R. 607, the Broadband for First Responders Act of 2011. Your thoughts about this legislation are helpful to me.

As you may know, H.R. 607 would amend the Communications Act of 1934 to increase the electromagnetic spectrum allocation for public safety services by 10 megahertz and reduce such allocation for commercial use by the same amount. H.R. 607 is pending before the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. While I am not a member of this committee, if H.R. 607 is brought before the full House for consideration, I will be sure to keep your views in mind.

It was good to hear from you. Please feel free to contact me any time. Also, do not hesitate to visit my website at bachus.house.gov and sign up for my e-newsletter to receive updates from Washington. It is an honor to serve as your United States Representative.

Sincerely,
Spencer Bachus
Member of Congress

DaveInDenver
05-25-2011, 04:32 PM
SB QST @ ARL $ARLB014
ARLB014 Senate "Companion" Bill to HR 607 Avoids Impacting Amateur
Spectrum

ZCZC AG14
QST de W1AW
ARRL Bulletin 14 ARLB014
From ARRL Headquarters
Newington CT May 25, 2011
To all radio amateurs

SB QST ARL ARLB014
ARLB014 Senate "Companion" Bill to HR 607 Avoids Impacting Amateur
Spectrum

On Thursday, May 19, Senators Joe Lieberman (ID-CT) and John McCain
(R-AZ) introduced S 1040 -- The Broadband for First Responders Act
of 2011 -- in the Senate. While it has a similar objective to HR
607 -- introduced in February by Representative Peter King (R-NY-3)
-- this Senate bill, unlike HR 607, does not call for auctioning any
portions of Amateur Radio spectrum. Both bills call for the
allocation of the so-called "D block" of spectrum, 758-763 and
788-793 MHz, to facilitate the development of a public safety
broadband network.

On learning in February that a Senate version of HR 607 was being
drafted, ARRL Chief Executive Officer David Sumner, K1ZZ, met with
staff members of the Senate’s Homeland Security and Governmental
Affairs Committee who were working on the bill to share the ARRL's
concerns with regard to HR 607. "They seemed very receptive to our
argument and appreciative of the public service contributions of
radio amateurs," Sumner said. "It is gratifying to see that S 1040
avoids impacting our spectrum allocations."

Sumner explained that while some media reports are referring to S
1040 as "the Senate version of HR 607," it is important that radio
amateurs not oppose S 1040: "There is no reason for us to do so. We
support the creation of an interoperable broadband network for first
responders. Other than to oppose any method that would impact
amateur spectrum use, we do not support one method over another of
achieving that objective. We only oppose one aspect of HR 607, not
the entire bill."

S 1040 has been referred to the Senate Committee on Science,
Commerce, and Transportation, chaired by Senator Jay Rockefeller
(D-WV). Senator Rockefeller earlier introduced his own bill, S 28,
to address the same general topic. Neither Senate bill would impact
amateur spectrum.
NNNN
/EX

CO Hunter
05-25-2011, 05:35 PM
Good news.