*************** The ARRL Letter Vol. 26, No. 43 October 26, 2007 *************** IN THIS EDITION: * + San Diego Area Hams Activated as Wildfires Ravage Southern California * + Second Annual ARRL On-Line Auction Up and Running * + ARRL Faces FCC in Federal Court over BPL Issues * + FCC's Riley Hollingsworth to Retire in January 2008 * New ARISS Antennas Installed on Columbus * + John Scott Redd, Vice Admiral, USN (Ret), K0DQ, "Going Ashore" * + Amateur Radio Service Named Volunteer Group of the Year by Marine Corps Marathon * Solar Update * IN BRIEF: This Weekend on the Radio ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration + New Mexico Ham Falls to Death from Tower + New Section Manager Appointed in Western Pennsylvania Tornado Touches Down in Michigan, Three Dead Former North Texas Section Manager Don Mathis, KB5YAM (SK) ARRL Again Participating in the Combined Federal Campaign Pension Protection Act Streamlines Charitable Donations from IRAs Let Us Know What You Think +Available on ARRL Audio News <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/> =========================================================== ==>Delivery problems: First see FAQ <http://www.arrl.org/members-only/faq.html#nodelivery>, then e-mail <email@example.com> ==>Editorial questions or comments only: S. Khrystyne Keane, <firstname.lastname@example.org> =========================================================== ==> SAN DIEGO AREA HAMS ACTIVATED AS WILDFIRES RAVAGE SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA As fires raged through parts of the San Diego area and other areas in Southern California, ham radio operators did their part to ensure the safety of residents either affected or threatened by the fires. ARES groups in San Diego were activated on Monday, October 22 and continued to assist their served agencies until early Wednesday morning. Sixty hams were called to service by the County of San Diego's Emergency Medical Service. According to ARRL San Diego Section Emergency Coordinator James J. Cammarano II, KG6R, hams assisted at the San Diego Medical Operations Center, six trauma centers and 16 community hospitals. Hams served as a resource, Cammarano said, "to be used in case primary circuits to hospital communications were lost due to either overload or power interruptions." In addition to these 60 amateurs, another dozen or so hams were activated by the Red Cross. ARRL Emergency Preparedness and Response Manager Dennis Dura, K2DCD, learned that San Diego ARES volunteers were activated and now they are in standby mode. "They are ready to go at a moment's notice, but there are currently no plans for re-activation," he said. As in any emergency situation, information can quickly change and the ARRL will continue to monitor the situation and inform members if the situation changes. As the fires started to spread, hams started a FIRENET on the Palomar ARC 146.73 MHz repeater. Howard White, KY6LA, of La Jolla, who was among those who served as net control operator under extremely stressful conditions, disseminated a preliminary log of his experience. Excerpts follow: "With flames starting to engulf the county and no active single source of information, as best as I could determine Charlie NN3V stepped into the information vacuum to start the 'FIRENET' as an ad hoc operation on Sunday afternoon. Early contributors included Gayle K6GO and Gary W6GDK. Initial operations started by collecting fire information as to fire location, wind directions, shelter locations and initial evacuations. Hams provided eyes and ears on the ground where the danger was. Soon however the fires seemed to be heading down to the Poway area so Charlie and the other Poway hams needed to evacuate.... "Day One: Is the fire near us? Where is the head of the fire? What directions are the heads going? What are the winds doing? Should we evacuate? What roads are closed? What about our animals? Where should we go? What should we take? What is the route to avoid the flames? Can you help us find missing people or pets? Can you help us get barrels of water for animals? Can you help us find food and water? Can you get the police to deal with looters? "Unlike Katrina, the questions and answers did not abate at night. It was nonstop. Terry K3PXX needed routing around the fires to evacuate his Animal trailer. Terry reported on Fires as he drove through Poway and back to San Marcos EOC. ROARS hams had evacuated Ramona and the 147.03 repeater and were looking for help to be routed safely out of the area. Fires broke out in Coronado Hills in San Marcos. People needed to be evacuated. Brian KF6C asked where to evacuate his 4 children. San Marcos EOC needed to be activated and FIRENET held the fort for them until they could get there and became operational to evacuate San Marcos. George KG6IDE tries to drive up to Ramona to evacuate elderly parents but we turn him back to avoid the flames... "0130 Tuesday: N9XF reports flame proceeding down 76 from Fallbrook. Tom KI6IET, who is blind, but stays at his post as my backup net control, needs to be evacuated. Evacuation arranged ok. Rob WA3IHV calls from his office at Palomar hospital to tell us his family was evacuated OK and horses survived... "2100 Tuesday: FIRENET hams drive to Qualcomm Stadium and load trucks with food. Dan leads ham relief convoy with food and supplies to Mira Costa College. Fire victims at shelter express gratitude for first food delivery... "2350 Wednesday: KG6VVN signs off as net control as the 146.730 repeater runs out of fuel and goes off the air..." Orange County update: Acting Section Emergency Coordinator Cathy Gardenias, K6VC, provided this update on the situation in the ARRL Orange Section as of October 25: "Slide Fire/Green Valley is 17% contained; Grass Fire is 70% contained. Santiago Canyon Fire was 50% but was reduced last night as it turned and headed for the Riverside County border of the Cleveland National Forest. "Amateur Radio operators have been utilized. The San Bernardino County Fire EOC has been using ECS and ARES members in the EOC to monitor communications and other jobs needed. At the command post at the Rim of The World High School near Lake Arrowhead, ECS and ARES members who have been fully trained in all ICS and S190 (bush training) are handling communications and other needs. This is according to Jeff W6JJR DEC for ARES San Bernardino County and a Public Information Officer (Miles) from the EOC in San Bernardino. The EOC is at Level III at this time. "SATERN [Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network] Amateur Radio operators at all the shelters have been volunteering their time as non communicators, but as helpers for those who are in need." As of Friday afternoon, CNN reported that 14 of the nearly two dozen fires were under control. Nearly 800 square miles has burned in Southern California, and seven deaths have been blamed on the fires, with dozens of injuries. Ron Roberts, Chairman of the San Diego Board of Supervisors estimates that 560,000 people were ordered to evacuate their homes, and thousands more were evacuated in San Bernardino, Los Angeles and Orange counties. Firefighters received help from Mexico, the state and federal governments and even inmates from California's prisons. About 7000 firefighters were battling the blazes, including 2300 inmates from California's Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, according to Governor Schwarzenegger. President Bush visited the area on Thursday and declared a federal emergency for seven counties: Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, Santa Barbara and Ventura. FEMA Administrator David Paulison said that the President's action authorizes FEMA to "coordinate all disaster relief efforts, which have the purpose of alleviating the hardship and suffering caused by the emergency on the local population, and to provide appropriate assistance for required emergency measures, authorized under Title V of the Stafford Act, to save lives, protect property and public health and safety and lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe." Schwarzenegger estimated that at least $75 million in federal aid would be needed. -- Some information from The Weather Channel and CNN ==> SECOND ANNUAL ARRL ON-LINE AUCTION UP AND RUNNING The Second Annual ARRL On-Line Auction <http://arrl.auctionanything.com/> went live Wednesday with more than 160 items to gawk at, gaze on and drool over. Bidding for these items, with more to be added as the auction progresses, ends November 2. Items range from a 1971 ARRL publication, Operating an Amateur Radio Station, which has an opening bid of $3, to an ICOM IC-7800 HF and 6 Meter Transceiver with an opening bid of $6865. ARRL Business Services Manager Deb Jahnke, K1DAJ, encourages everyone to come and peruse the wide variety of offerings: "Browse through the Web site frequently, as items will be added on a daily basis. We also encourage you to look through the 'Help' and 'About Us' sections. You'll find useful information about bidding, FAQs and a host of other facts. To ensure an enjoyable experience, please be sure to read all policies under the 'About Us' section," she said. ==> ARRL FACES FCC IN FEDERAL COURT OVER BPL ISSUES On Tuesday, October 23, the ARRL faced the Federal Communications Commission in the US Court of Appeals over the continuing debate concerning harmful interference to licensed radio services from unlicensed Broadband over Powerline (BPL) systems. BPL is the delivery of broadband Internet communications using unshielded electrical wiring to conduct high-speed digital signals to homes and businesses. BPL systems are designed to conduct RF energy through unshielded, medium voltage power lines, using some or all of the HF spectrum between 1.7-80 MHz. At those frequencies on unshielded overhead power lines, the electrical wiring not only conducts the signals, it radiates them very efficiently for very substantial distances from the power lines. In October 2006, the League petitioned the United States Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit to review the FCC's October 2004 Report and Order (R&O) in ET Docket 04-37 and 2006 Memorandum Opinion and Order which generally denied all of the 17 petitions for reconsideration. In its brief initially filed May 17, the ARRL contends, among other things, that the FCC's adoption of rules to govern unlicensed BPL systems fundamentally alter the longstanding rights of radio licensees, including Amateur Radio operators. Specifically, the FCC order, while adopting rules that it claimed would minimize instances of harmful interference to licensed services, eliminated a fundamental requirement for unlicensed devices, and held for the first time that BPL systems need not shut down in the case of unresolved instances of harmful interference to "mobile" stations. The ARRL argues that the FCC's BPL rules violate Section 301 of the Communications Act, which requires that operators of devices that emit radio frequency energy which have a substantial interference potential cannot operate without an FCC license. "For years, the FCC has consistently read Section 301 to apply to unintentional radiators, such as BPL devices, and has expressly embodied that interpretation in its rules," the League's brief recounts. The brief notes that extensive studies done by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration conclude persuasively that interference from BPL to mobile stations can be expected at distances up to almost a football field, and to fixed stations at distances up to five football fields. The Commission then compounded its error by asserting that BPL devices do not fall within Section 301 at all, the League said. "This hail-Mary attempt at justification is another unexplained departure from prior policy that independently requires invalidation of the orders," the ARRL remarked in its brief. The ARRL contends that the FCC orders under review "jeopardize the license rights of ARRL's members and other license holders by authorizing providers of a new device -- Access Broadband over Power Lines, or 'BPL' -- to send radio signals across the electric grid in the frequencies the license holders occupy, but without having to obtain an FCC license." Each side had 20 minutes to present their case, with the League going first. Attorney Jonathan Frankel, of the WilmerHale Law Firm, argued the case for ARRL before the three judge panel; Attorney C. Grey Pash, of the FCC General Counsel's office, argued for the FCC. According to ARRL President Joel Harrison, W5ZN, who attended the Court session, Frankel's argument centered on the removal of interference protection for licensed mobile stations, and the Commission's rules for measuring interference. "Frankel received multiple, direct questions from each of the judges concerning the topics in the briefs, and responded to each very well," Harrison said. "Judges Tatel, Rogers and Kavanaugh interrupted both sides repeatedly with intelligent, challenging questions," ARRL Chief Executive Officer David Sumner, K1ZZ, said. "For example," Sumner continued, "while quizzing Frankel, the judges sounded skeptical that interference to mobile stations couldn't simply be regarded as 'not harmful' because it was temporary; but then, when quizzing the FCC's attorney, Judge Tatel said in response to the statement that 'mobile stations could simply move,' that in the case of BPL in Manassas, Virginia for example, you can only get away from the interference by leaving Manassas.' It wasn't, he went on to say, like a garage door opener." For the first time in decades, the FCC decided against requiring that operations found to cause "harmful interference" be shut down immediately -- a stance that ignores the "right of the license holder to be free from interference," Frankel said in court. The FCC has also withheld portions of studies that would "potentially" show BPL does cause harmful interference to other devices -- and ignored reports of tests the ARRL argues offer "substantial" evidence of interference problems, he continued. "We're talking about devices that radiate for football fields in length and all along power lines," Frankel said of the BPL gadgets. "When you drive down the street, [an Amateur Radio operator's] service is interrupted constantly." "All three judges were clearly very familiar with the written record. They spent a lot of time on the issue of what information the FCC had withheld from public view (redacted)," Sumner said. "In the course of the argument, the FCC's attorney had to acknowledge that the Commission's explanations in the BPL proceeding were deficient in a number of respects, although it wasn't clear that administrative agencies are held to a very high standard in that regard." Harrison said that Pash, the FCC's attorney, began his defense of the FCC orders and was almost "immediately interrogated" by the judges on the Commission's premise that "a mobile station in a licensed service should not be afforded complete protection from harmful interference just because it can just move away from the interference. Pash also came under what Harrison called "considerable direct questioning" concerning the redacted material from the FCC's response to the ARRL's Freedom of Information request. ARRL had asked the FCC to produce all of what FCC described as "extensive" studies allegedly justifying its BPL order, on which the FCC relied in adopting the BPL rules. The FCC had deleted what appeared to be any material in that one single study that indicated that interference from BPL systems was likely. One page that was completely redacted was a Powerpoint slide titled "New Information Arguing for Caution on HF BPL." The FCC claimed that was not factual information, but just staff advice. Pash "attempted to present a position that the material pertained to 'staff opinion' that was determined to not be a basis for the FCC's decision," Harrison said. According to Pash, the redacted sections referenced earlier sections of the report, and were not "a bunch of new information," Harrison added. Pash defended the Commission's approach. He said the FCC didn't require the so-called "cease-operations" rule because it didn't find ample evidence that BPL posed any real potential for "harmful" interference. He said the studies the FCC relied upon, including one by the US National Telecommunications and Information Administration, found that so long as the FCC restricts the strength of the signals emitted by BPL devices -- as it did through its rules -- others sharing that spectrum "won't notice a difference" in the quality of their services. Attorney Frankel reserved seven of his allotted 20 minutes for rebuttal of the FCC's arguments. He reiterated the League's position concerning mobile operations and also emphasized that "unless we have an opportunity to review the redacted material, no determination can be made as to its role in the FCC's rulemaking decision," Harrison said. Both Sumner and Harrison said they were "quite impressed" with the knowledge that the judges had concerning the case and with the questions that they asked. Harrison said it could be "three months or more" before the Court announces its decision. - Some information from cnet.com ==> FCC'S RILEY HOLLINGSWORTH TO RETIRE IN JANUARY 2008 Riley Hollingsworth, Special Counsel in the FCC's Enforcement Bureau, announced his retirement this week, effective Friday, January 3, 2008. While his successor has not been named, Hollingsworth was quick to point out that the FCC's Amateur Radio enforcement program will continue. Hollingsworth told the ARRL: "After about a year of thinking about the 'if not now, when?' question, I decided to retire January 3. I love working for the FCC and I've always had great jobs, but this one involving the Amateur Radio Service has been the most fun and I have enjoyed every day of it. For nine years I've worked with the best group of licensees on earth, enjoyed your support and tremendous FCC support and looked forward every day to coming to work. The Amateur Radio enforcement program will continue without missing a beat, and after retirement I look forward to being involved with Amateur Radio every way I can. I thank all of you for being so dedicated and conscientious, and for the encouragement you give us every day." Speaking at the New England Division Convention in August 2000, Hollingsworth offered his 10 personal suggestions to secure a sound future for Amateur Radio <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/00/0901/rileys10.html>, encouraging amateurs to "seize the moment" to ensure a bright future for Amateur Radio. "Look beyond enforcement," he urged, "because if I do my job right, in five years you won't even remember my name." Hollingsworth said that while no one can predict the future, amateurs must invent theirs in an era of converging digital and RF technology. "There is no reason why our Amateur Radio Service can't be the envy of the rest of the world," he said. Getting there, he suggested, comes with each amateur's taking responsibility for his or her behavior on the air. Amateurs should encourage arrogant, negative operators to "take their anger and hate to the Internet," he said. "Every minute they are on the Internet is a minute they aren't on Amateur Radio." Upon learning of Hollingsworth's retirement, ARRL Chief Operating Officer Harold Kramer, WJ1B, said, "Riley Hollingsworth has been a tremendous supporter of and asset to the Amateur Radio Service. He will be remembered as being the force behind the re-introduction of Amateur Radio enforcement in 1998 and continuing those efforts through today. His contribution in cleaning up the amateur bands has been substantial and effective. We are very sorry to see him go, and we wish him every continued success." ==> NEW ARISS ANTENNAS INSTALLED ON COLUMBUS Two Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) antennas have been installed on the nadir side of the new International Space Station's Columbus module, set to launch later this year. On October 12, the antennas successfully passed electrical and SWR tests, with one of the two antennas, Antenna 42, going through a final test -- a thermal test under vacuum. Based on modeling, engineers have no fear the antenna will pass with flying colors. Columbus will house an additional Amateur Radio station, including the first digital Amateur Radio TV (DATV) station in space, as well as a ham radio transponder. The yet-to-be-built Columbus amateur gear will facilitate operation on new frequencies that will make it possible for ARISS to establish wideband and video operations for the first time and allow continuous transponder operation. Video from the installation and inspection is available at the Columbus Web site <http://www.ariss-eu.org/columbus.htm>. At the ARISS International conference last year in San Francisco, Graham Shirville, G3VZV, speaking on behalf of ARISS-Europe, outlined plans for a mode L/S ham radio transponder as well as a DATV downlink on S1 band (2.4 GHz). "So, future ARISS contacts could have pictures as well as sound," Shirville told the delegates. ARISS-Europe is looking at a 10 W transmitter and a signal bandwidth of from 4 to 8 MHz. Since the Columbus module will be some distance from the other two ARISS stations, parallel operation will be possible. Funding to finish and install ham radio antennas on the European Space Agency (ESA)-built laboratory module has been uncertain, however. ARISS Vice Chairman Gaston Bertels, ON4WF, says donations from various sources covered a payment of 9000 Euros (approximately $12,000) in March. A second payment is due this fall. Donations already have come in from the ARRL Foundation, AMSAT-NA and AMSAT-UK, among other organizations, as well as from many individual donors. According to Bertels, there is still a funding shortfall of 15,000 Euros (approximately $21,000 USD). To help out, PayPal donations are being accepted (access the PayPal site via the Columbus Web page). ==> JOHN SCOTT REDD, VICE ADMIRAL, USN (RET), K0DQ, "GOING ASHORE" Scott Redd, K0DQ, Director of the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), announced his retirement from that agency last week. Redd submitted his resignation to President Bush with an effective date of November 10, 2007. Over his four-decade career, Scott Redd has created a new Navy fleet, helped administer Iraq's first occupational government and served as the first director of the NCTC. An active contester for more than 40 years, Redd, a native of Sydney, Iowa, enjoys both CW and phone. In 1971, Redd, then K0DQI, won the CQ World Wide DX Contest (phone) from Mexico as 6D1AA 1971. He also won the ARRL International DX Contest, both phone and CW, in 1972 from Mexico as XE1IIJ; this was the first time a single operator surpassed 10,000 contacts in a contest. In 1973, Redd won the ARRL Phone DX Contest from the DX side (Mexico) as 6J9AA, and in 1986, he won the ARRL CW from the US as W3GRF. All of these wins were as Single Operator, High Power. Redd went on to place third in his first CQ Worked All Prefix (WPX) (CW) contest in 1995 as A92Q from Bahrain. Throughout his ham radio career, Redd has held many DX call signs: P40Q, 3V8DQ, A92Q, XE1IIJ, 4A4AA/1, 6J9AA, 6D1AA, 6G1AA, 6J9AA, 4C5AA and 4C9AA, to name a few. A 1966 graduate of the Naval Academy and a Fulbright Scholar, in 1995 Redd founded and was named commander of the Navy's Fifth Fleet - which operates in waters surrounding the Middle East and is the only new fleet since World War II. He served as director of strategic plans and policy on the Joint Chiefs of Staff from 1996 until he retired from the Navy two years later. Redd was also named chief operating officer of the Coalition Provisional Authority in March 2004, but the White House recalled him a month later to lead the commission that examined the intelligence failures that led up to the Iraq war. He earlier served as Deputy Administrator and Chief Operating Officer of the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad, for which he received the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Public Service. Redd pledged to carry out the mission of the NCTC "with determination, with integrity, and to the very best of my abilities." Congress confirmed Redd as NCTC director in August 2005. The NCTC is the nation's repository for counterterrorism intelligence and sets the nation's war plan for fighting terrorists. The center has few employees of its own and, instead, brings together about 400 analysts and other employees from agencies such as the CIA, the Homeland Security Department and the FBI to pore over data collected by other agencies. The NCTC houses the nation's terrorist watch list and distributes it throughout the government nightly. It holds video teleconferences three times a day to keep the White House and the intelligence community informed about terrorist activity and counterterror operations. "We say, 'Mr. President, here's what the intelligence community believes, and here's where agencies disagree,'" Redd said. "So now he can see what the disagreement is and why. Because intelligence is not an arithmetic thing, there's a lot of judgment that goes into it." ==> AMATEUR RADIO SERVICE NAMED VOLUNTEER GROUP OF THE YEAR BY MARINE CORPS MARATHON On October 19, the Marine Corps Marathon announced that the Amateur Radio Service is its Volunteer Group of the Year in light of the 30 years of service and support hams have provided for the annual event. Amateur Radio volunteers began assisting with the Marine Corps Marathon in 1978 and have provided essential, mission critical communications to the medical staff on race day. The Volunteer Group of the Year Award will be presented today, October 26, as part of a special ceremony. "The ham radio operators play a vital role in medical operations of the race. The knowledge and expertise of their dedicated volunteers enables the Marine Corps Marathon to provide all participants the highest level of emergency care and I am deeply appreciative of the hams' continued support," said Rick Nealis, Director of the Marine Corps Marathon. Initially, ham radio served as a simple means of communications at both aid stations and mile markers. In the early 1990s, this support expanded to include digital communications with the aid stations and tracking of the pace car. Eventually, the aid station support evolved to automated digital communications that includes 115 ham operations located at mile markers, water points, aid stations, two finish area medical locations and as shadows to the division commanders. More than 100 Amateur Radio operators volunteer for the Marine Corps Marathon. The award also recognizes two specific individuals, Rick Bunn, N4ASX, and Tom Azlin, N4ZPT, for their contribution to Amateur Radio participation at the Marine Corps Marathon. Bunn was first licensed in 1971 while in high school. He began volunteering for the Marine Corps Marathon in 1983 and served as the Marine Corps Marathon Amateur Radio liaison from 1997-2001. From 2001-2005, he served as the lead Amateur Radio operator, coordinating all aspects of ham radio support to the marathon. Azlin has been licensed since 1990. He first volunteered with the Marine Corps Marathon in 2001 and, since 2004, has been the Amateur Radio operator responsible for coordinating all aspects of aid station ham radio support. Voted "Best Marathon for Families," the Marine Corps Marathon continues a combined tradition of dedication, sportsmanship and patriotism. Runners from all walks of life have participated in the world's largest marathon to not offer prize money, deservingly earning the nickname "The People's Marathon." The 32nd Marine Corps Marathon will be held on Sunday, October 28, 2007 in Arlington, Virginia and Washington, DC. ==>SOLAR UPDATE Tad "When the Sun Goes Down We'll be Groovin'" Cook, K7RA, this week reports: Zero, zero, zero sunspots for 18 straight days now. A single sunspot appeared briefly October 6-7, no sunspots for four days prior, one sunspot for the final few days of September, and none for the three whole weeks prior to that. Sunspot numbers for October 18 through 24 were 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0 and 0 with a mean of 0. 10.7 cm flux was 68.2, 67.3, 66.9, 67.2, 66.7, 67.1, and 67.5 with a mean of 67.3. Estimated planetary A indices were 10, 15, 12, 4, 5, 7 and 3 with a mean of 8. Estimated mid-latitude A indices were 11, 11, 8, 5, 3, 6 and 2, with a mean of 6.6. For more information concerning radio propagation, visit the ARRL Technical Information Service Propagation page <http://www.arrl.org/tis/info/propagation.html>. To read this week's Solar Report in its entirety, check out the W1AW Propagation Bulletin page <http://www.arrl.org/w1aw/prop/>. __________________________________ ==>IN BRIEF: * This Weekend on the Radio: This weekend, the ARRL International EME Competition is October 27-28. The NCCC Sprint (CW) is October 26. The CQ Worldwide DX Contest (SSB) and the 10-10 International Fall Contest are October 27-28. The SKCC Weekend Sprintathon is October 28. The ARRL Sweepstakes (CW) is November 3-5. The IPARC Contest (CW).The Ukrainian DX Contest and the NA Collegiate ARC Championship (CW) are November 3-5. The IPARC Contest (SSB), High Speed Club CW Contest and the DARC 10 Meter Digital Contest are November 4. The ARS Spartan Sprint is November 6. See the ARRL Contest Branch page <http://www.arrl.org/contests/>, the ARRL Contester's Rate Sheet <http://www.arrl.org/contests/rate-sheet/> and the WA7BNM Contest Calendar <http://www.hornucopia.com/contestcal/index.html> for more info. * ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration: Registration remains open through Sunday, November 4 for these online courses beginning on Friday, November 16: Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 2 (EC-002); Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Level 3 (EC-003R2); Antenna Modeling (EC-004); HF Digital Communications (EC-005); VHF/UHF -- Life Beyond the Repeater (EC-008), and Radio Frequency Propagation (EC-011). To learn more, visit the CCE Course Listing page <http://www.arrl.org/cce/courses.html> or contact the Continuing Education Program Coordinator <email@example.com>. * New Mexico Ham Falls to Death from Tower: ARRL Member Greg Molyneaux, N5CLM, of Roswell, New Mexico, fell to his death Saturday, October 20, as he was climbing his tower, according to the Office of the Medical Investigator for the State of New Mexico. Friends said that Molyneaux was climbing up the tower to make antenna adjustments and had just passed the guy wires at 90 feet when he fell; according to reports, his climbing belt was not hooked properly. Molyneaux was a member of the Pecos Valley Amateur Radio Club, F.I.S.T.S., ARRL, Straight Key Century Club, Roadrunner Amateur Radio Club, Public Service Net and the Southwest Traffic Net. The family will be holding a private service at a later date. Friends may pay their respects online <http://www.lagronefuneralchapels.com/>. * New Section Manager Appointed in Western Pennsylvania: John Rodgers, N3MSE, of Butler, Pennsylvania, has been appointed Section Manager of the Western Pennsylvania Section, announced Dave Patton, NN1N, ARRL Membership and Volunteer Programs Manager, effective October 24. He will complete the term of office of Larry O'Toole, K3LBP, of Mount Pleasant, who stepped down due to health reasons; K3LBP has served as Section Manager since April 2006. Rodgers is returning to Section's top position where he served as Western Pennsylvania Section Manager from January 2000-September 2003. He also served as an Assistant Section Manger starting in 1995. Rodgers' term of office continues through December 31, 2008 * Tornado Touches Down in Michigan, Three Dead: On October 18, a strong low pressure system centered over Minnesota touched off supercell thunderstorms throughout Michigan, Indiana, Wisconsin, Illinois, Kentucky, and Tennessee -- all the way down to the panhandle of Florida. These storms produced about 35 tornados. Two people died in an EF-2 tornado that touched down in Williamston, Michigan around 10:30 PM EDT. Three people died as a result of the Michigan tornados. A total of seven tornado warnings issued for Ingham County with the one confirmed touchdown near Williamston. These storms also resulted in an EF3 tornado devastating the city of Nappanee, Indiana, causing extensive damage to more than 100 homes and businesses. The authorities declared a state of emergency for the city of Nappanee. * Former North Texas Section Manager Don Mathis, KB5YAM (SK): Former ARRL North Texas Section Manager Don Mathis, KB5YAM, passed away on October 6 in Oak Point, Texas. He was 65 years old. Mathis served as North Texas Section Manager from July 1999-February 2001. He also held other Field Organization positions: Technical Coordinator, Bulletin Manager and Net Manager. "Don was a great example and a tireless worker for the National Traffic System (NTS) and Amateur Radio," Don Murray, W9VE, said. "He was a life member of the Dallas Amateur Radio Club (DARC) and respected ambassador for the ARRL. Don will be sorely missed for a long time." Mathis was originally from Illinois, and worked for Western Electric and AT&T for 25 years. After retiring from AT&T, he established a contract instruction business. Mathis was also a dedicated member of the Coast Guard Auxiliary, Flotilla 59, and held staff positions at the flotilla, division and district levels. Services for Don Mathis were held October 10 in Denton, Texas. The family requests in lieu of flowers, donations be made to: Coast Guard Auxiliary Association, Attn Operation Life Ring, 9449 Watson Industrial Park, St Louis, MO 63126. * ARRL Participating in the 2007 Combined Federal Campaign: For each year since 2002, the US Office of Personnel Management has designated the ARRL to participate in its Combined Federal Campaign (CFC). In the past, this campaign for federal government civilian employees, US Postal Service workers and members of the military has generated more than $100,000 for ARRL programs. The CFC provides an easy way to support ARRL's effort to represent its members and all radio amateurs. Similar to the United Way, the CFC encourages individuals to pledge by payroll deduction to non-profit organizations of their choice. The ARRL encourages eligible radio amateurs to consider the League when designating campaign recipients. Those wishing to select the ARRL to receive all or part of their payroll deductions should designate organization 10099 when completing their CFC donor forms. Donations to ARRL can be designated for Diamond Club contributions, the ARRL Spectrum Defense Fund or the ARRL Education & Technology Program. Or, donors may make unrestricted contributions to the League. One important note: Since the CFC does not provide the ARRL with the names of individual donors, the ARRL Development Office would appreciate a copy of the donor form to ensure that each contribution is applied according to the donor's wishes and that the contribution or pledge can be properly acknowledged. The 2007 CFC ends December 15. * Pension Protection Act Streamlines Charitable Donations from IRAs: The ARRL Development Office notes that a provision of the Pension Protection Act (PPA) of 2006 offers an opportunity for certain IRA holders to give something back to Amateur Radio by donating to the Spectrum Defense Fund, to the ARRL Education and Technology Fund or to the ARRL Diamond Club -- which provides flexible funding for a variety of programs not supported by member dues. "Individuals who are at least 70-1/2 and support nonprofits of their choice may use IRA or Roth IRA assets as a convenient, tax-efficient source to make contributions while conserving non-IRA assets," ARRL Chief Development Officer Mary Hobart, K1MMH, points out. "Contributions must be made directly from the IRA to the organization, not to a donor-advised fund, gift annuity or trust." Hobart says contributions of up to $100,000 may be made by December 31, 2007: "A direct contribution from an IRA to a qualified organization is excluded from income," she emphasizes. "We have received significant support through this program. I hope you are considering a year-end gift to the ARRL." This two-year program expires December 31, 2007. Hobart urges prospective donors to consult with a financial advisor before taking advantage of this opportunity. Contact Hobart <firstname.lastname@example.org> for more information or call 860-594-0397. You can also visit the ARRL's PPA Web site <http://www.arrl.org/development/ppa.html#top> for more information. * Let Us Know What You Think: What's your favorite part of The ARRL Letter? What kind of stories would you like to see in the Letter? Would you prefer the Letter in an HTML format? This is your Letter and your chance to let your voice be heard. Please send your suggestions to ARRL News Editor S. Khrystyne Keane, K1SFA, at email@example.com, with the subject line "ARRL Letter Suggestions." All messages will be read and discussed, and we look forward to implementing positive suggestions into the ARRL Letter. =========================================================== The ARRL Letter is published Fridays, 50 times each year, by the American Radio Relay League: ARRL--the National Association for Amateur Radio, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111; tel 860-594-0200; fax 860-594-0259; <http://www.arrl.org/>. Joel Harrison, W5ZN, President. The ARRL Letter offers a weekly e-mail digest of essential and general news of interest to active radio amateurs. Visit the ARRL Web site <http://www.arrl.org/> for the latest Amateur Radio news and news updates. The ARRL Web site <http://www.arrl.org/> also offers informative features and columns. ARRL Audio News <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/> is a weekly "ham radio newscast" compiled and edited from The ARRL Letter. It's also available as a podcast from our Web site. Material from The ARRL Letter may be republished or reproduced in whole or in part in any form without additional permission. Credit must be given to The ARRL Letter/American Radio Relay League. ==>Delivery problems (ARRL member direct delivery only!): firstname.lastname@example.org ==>Editorial questions or comments: S. Khrystyne Keane, K1SFA, email@example.com ==>ARRL News on the Web: <http://www.arrl.org/> ==>ARRL Audio News: <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/> or call 860-594-0384 ==>How to Get The ARRL Letter The ARRL Letter is available to ARRL members free of charge directly from ARRL HQ. To subscribe, unsubscribe or change your address for e-mail delivery: ARRL members first must register on the Members Only Web Site <http://www.arrl.org/members/>. You'll have an opportunity during registration to sign up for e-mail delivery of The ARRL Letter, W1AW bulletins, and other material. To change these selections--including delivery of The ARRL Letter--registered members should click on the "Member Data Page" link (in the Members Only box). Click on "Modify membership data," check or uncheck the appropriate boxes and/or change your e-mail address if necessary. (Check "Temporarily disable all automatically sent email" to temporarily stop all e-mail deliveries.) Then, click on "Submit modification" to make selections effective. (NOTE: HQ staff members cannot change your e-mail delivery address. You must do this yourself via the Members Only Web Site.) The ARRL Letter also is available to all, free of charge, from these sources: * ARRLWeb <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/>. (NOTE: The ARRL Letter will be posted each Friday when it is distributed via e-mail.) * The QTH.net listserver, thanks to volunteers from the Boston Amateur Radio Club: Visit Mailing Lists@QTH.Net <http://mailman.qth.net/mailman/listinfo/letter-list>. (NOTE: The ARRL cannot assist subscribers who receive The ARRL Letter via this listserver.)
The ARRL Letter
The ARRL Letter offers a weekly summary of essential news of interest to active amateurs that is available in advance of publication in QST, our official journal. The ARRL Letter strives to be timely, accurate, concise and readable.
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Delivery problems (ARRL member direct delivery only!): firstname.lastname@example.org
Editorial questions or comments: S. Khrystyne Keane, K1SFA, K1SFA@arrl.org.