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Volunteer Monitor Program Recognizes Good Operators


Volunteer Monitor Program Coordinator Riley Hollingsworth, K4ZDH, said the program has recognized numerous radio amateurs with Good Operator Notices.

“One facet of the ARRL and FCC agreement that set up the Volunteer Monitor Program calls for ARRL to recognize especially good amateur radio behavior, in order to encourage compliance with FCC rules and further the efficiency of the Amateur Radio Service,” Hollingsworth said. “Seventeen operators in 15 states received Good Operator Notices in the first quarter of 2020. The Good Operator Notices went to veteran operators as well as newcomers, including a 13-year-old in North Carolina for CW operation during the Youth on the Air Special Event, and a 14-year-old in Wyoming for SSB operation.”

Hollingsworth also said that a 2-meter repeater operator received a Good Operator Report for establishing and managing a COVID-19 net in Pennsylvania, while other operators of various license classes received notices for everyday SSB and CW operation on the HF bands. Recipients were nominated on the basis of operation observed by Volunteer Monitors.

According to Hollingsworth, Volunteer Monitors reported 2,035 hours monitoring on HF monitoring, and 2,856 hours monitoring on VHF/UHF and other frequencies during May. Two cases were referred to FCC.

After kicking off on January 1, the new Volunteer Monitor Program ramped up to operational status earlier this spring, starting with a “soft rollout” that started on February1, designed to familiarize Volunteer Monitors (VMs) with issues on the bands and to put into practice what to report — and what to ignore, based on their training.

VMs not only look for operating discrepancies, but for examples of good operating. Hollingsworth is using a system called VMTRAC — developed by a VM — to measure the work of VMs and determine instances that qualify for good operator or discrepancy notices, referral to the FCC, or follow-up with FCC requests to the VM program. — Thanks to Riley Hollingsworth, K4ZDH




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