ARRL Board Sets Legislative Agenda at 2011 Annual Meeting
The ARRL Board of Directors held its 2011 Annual Meeting January 21-22, 2011 in Windsor, Connecticut, under the chairmanship of President Kay Craigie, N3KN. International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) Secretary Rod Stafford, W6ROD, and Radio Amateurs of Canada (RAC) President Geoff Bawden, VE4BAW, were guests of the Board. Two recently elected vice directors, Andrea Hartlage, KG4IUM, Southeastern Division, and John Robert Stratton, N5AUS, West Gulf Division, attended their first Board meeting.
Among the highlights of actions taken at the meeting:
Legislative Relations: ARRL Legislative Consultant John Chwat of Chwat & Company reported on the legislative program in the 111th Congress and plans for the 112th, particularly the reintroduction of the Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Enhancement Act into the House of Representatives and the expected similar Senate bill. The Board voted to adopt seven legislative objectives for the 112th Congress:
- Expansion of the “reasonable accommodation” of Amateur Radio antennas to all forms of land use regulation;
- Opposition to the reallocation of amateur spectrum;
- Opposition to legislation that diminishes the rights of federal licensees in favor of unlicensed emitters;
- Seeking recognition of the unique attributes of the Amateur Radio Service in any legislation addressing communications in emergencies, disasters and homeland security matters;
- Supporting the legislative objectives of other radiocommunication services that require spectrum access and protection from interference for noncommercial purposes that benefit the public;
- Opposition to distracted driving legislation that does not exempt two-way mobile transmitters operated by FCC licensees, and
- Supporting The FCC Commissioners’ Technical Resource Enhancement Act.
National Broadband Plan: In response to FCC and NTIA studies that aim to allocate 500 MHz between about 225 MHz and 4.4 GHz to mobile broadband applications, the Board established the Ad-Hoc National Broadband Plan Committee. The Committee will assess the current threat levels to the applicable Amateur Radio bands and recommend strategies to the Board to protect these bands. A preliminary report is due July 1, 2011.
Financial Matters: ARRL treasurer Jim McCobb, K1LU, reported that the recovery in the League’s portfolio continues. Coupled with bequests, the portfolio is at an all-time high. Chief Financial Officer Barry Shelley, N1VXY, noted that ARRL finances have fared well even during the past two years of economic uncertainty. The Board voted unanimously to accept the 2011-2012 ARRL Financial Plan, as amended.
Electronic publishing: The Board directed staff to prepare a marketing plan for electronic publishing of QST and other ARRL periodicals. If the report is accepted by the Administration and Finance Committee, the Board will consider the report at its July 2011 meeting.
Submission of Petitions for Section Manager: The Board voted to amend the Rules and Regulations of the ARRL Field Organization by adding the following sentence to the end: “Nominating petitions may be made by facsimile or electronic transmission of images, provided that upon request by the Membership & Volunteer Programs Manager the original documents are received by the Manager within seven days of the request.”
Chief Development Officer: Mary Hobart, K1MMH, reported that the Diamond Club performed well during 2010, but contributions to the Education and Technology Program were down. The ARRL received the largest bequest to date during 2010, from the Charles (W8KGD) and Iona Mathias Joint Trust.
General Counsel: Chris Imlay, W3KD, discussed the pressure for additional spectrum for mobile broadband services, as well as an FCC Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that could amend the CORES registration system.
Executive Committee: The following were elected: George R. Isely, W9GIG; Tom Frenaye, K1KI; Bob Vallio, W6RGG; Dr David Woolweaver, K5RAV, and Brian Mileshosky, N5ZGT. There is no change to the composition of the committee.
Ethics and Elections: The Board voted unanimously to modify By-Law 42 to read: “Decisions of the Ethics and Elections Committee may be reviewed by the Board of Directors upon the written request of any candidate for that office or five or more Directors.” This provides for an appeal by any candidate who may be affected by a decision regarding eligibility for office.
ARRL Foundation: Foundation President Tom Frenaye, K1KI, reported that four new scholarships were added during 2010, and that the Foundation is willing to work with any club or group wishing to establish a new scholarship. Jim Fenstermaker, K9JF, Bruce Frahm, KØBJ, and Eugene Hastings, W1VRK, were elected to three-year terms as Foundation directors.
Microwave Band Planning Committee: The Board voted to dissolve this committee and offered its appreciation to those who volunteered.
VHF-UHF Advisory Committee: The Board voted to renew the charter of this committee until July 2012.
Ad Hoc Committee on Scouting: Rocky Mountain Division Director Brian Mileshosky, N5ZGT, announced the expected signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the ARRL and the Boy Scouts of America.
The Board named Ron Tomo, KE2UK, as the recipient of the 2010 International Humanitarian Award. Tomo was recognized for his involvement in humanitarian communications over many years and in particular his volunteer communications work in Haiti following the January 2010 earthquake.
The Board named Phillip Lucas, Jennifer Compton and Bill Colley the recipients of the three Bill Leonard, W2SKE, Professional Media Awards. Lucas was honored in the print category for his Washington Post article about Field Day. Compton, producer of a half hour TV news show in New Hampshire, produced a 7 minute video segment that explained the allure of Field Day. Colley informed and entertained his drive-time radio show audience in Delaware when he interviewed a local ham about Amateur Radio.
John Thomas, W3FAF, was named the recipient of the George Hart Distinguished Service Award for his many years of service in several different capacities in several different ARRL sections.
Hudson Division Director Frank Fallon, N2FF, who had announced his resignation from the Board effective at the close of the meeting, was given a standing ovation for his years of service to the ARRL. Vice Director Joyce Birmingham, KA2ANF, became Director at the close of the meeting.
Complete Minutes Available
The complete Minutes of the 2011 Annual Meeting of the ARRL Board of Directors are available on the ARRL website.
The Second 2011 meeting of the ARRL Board of Directors is scheduled for July 15-16, 2011.