ARRL Legislative Activity
High on the ARRL's legislative agenda is to continue seeking Congressional action to direct the FCC to extend PRB-1 type protections for Amateurs residing in communities that have restrictive covenents and deed-restrictions. To that end, in late June 2014, the "Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2014" was introduced into Congress by Representative Adam Kinzinger of IL and co-sponsor Joe Courtney of CT. The bill garnered a total of 69 so-sponsors in the House but was not moved out of committee for consideration. The ARRL Washington team is working with members of the new 114th Congress and believes that the "Amateur Radio Parity Act" will be reintroduced into the House. The ARRL team is also working to find a sponsor and co-sponsor in the US Senate.
The League is also continuing to monitor for any legislation that would threaten existing Amateur frequency allocations, and will active oppose such legislation.
Another potential threat the ARRL monitors is any cellular / mobile telecommunications legislation that would impede am Amateur's ability to utilize their privileges while mobile. The ARRL's Washington representation team also continues to monitor for any legislation that would potentially errode the protections Amateur Radio has from unlicensed emitters or legislation that might encourage the deployment of spectrum-polluting technologies.
Federal Legislative Efforts
In keeping with the Legislative Objectives adopted by the ARRL Board of Directors, the ARRL Wasington team actively works with legislators and staff in both the US House of Representatives and US Senate. This interaction with key persons in the legislative process centers upon:
1) Identifcation of specific legislation that could impact amateur radio licensees and operators.
2) Providing educational backround materials and information to legislators and their staff.
3) Seeking support of or opposition to specific bills pending before Congress.
At times the ARRL may ask its membershp to contact their members of Congress to express their support or opposition to specific bills. These efforts are coordinated through the ARRL Grassroots Program volunteers, working with ARRL staff and elected ARRL officials.
State and Local Legislative Initiative
While ARRL Headquarters does not generally become directly involved with state legislation or local ordinances, we do provide support to State Government Liaisons and ARRL representatives who monitor proposed local ordinances and state laws. This includes monitoring local and state actions on the use of cellular and mobile telephones while driving that might impact Amateur Radio mobile operations, tower and zoning ordinances that might not demonstrate the "reasonable accommodation" standard of PRB-1, or other similar proposals.
When members and non-members bring these type laws and ordinances to the ARRL Regulatory Information Manager, they are reviewed, and frequently comments and suggestions are provided to the Amateurs to bolster their efforts to make such legislation and ordinances more "Amateur friendly". ARRL Headquarters also monitors bills introduced to the various state legislatures and assemblies, providing information on bills that ARRL Section leaderhip should follow. However, it is the local Amateurs - supported by ARRL officials and staff - that take the lead in addressing these issue and in dealing with the various governing bodies when these topics arise.