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ARRL General Bulletin ARLB014 (2015)

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ARLB014 Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015 Introduced in Congress

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ARRL Bulletin 14  ARLB014
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  March 9, 2015
To all radio amateurs 

SB QST ARL ARLB014
ARLB014 Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015 Introduced in Congress

"The Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015" - H.R.1301 - has been
introduced in the US House of Representatives. The measure would
direct the FCC to extend its rules relating to reasonable
accommodation of Amateur Service communications to private land use
restrictions. US Rep Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) introduced the bill March
4 with 12 original co-sponsors from both sides of the aisle - seven
Republicans and five Democrats. Kinzinger also sponsored "The
Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2014, which died at the end of the 113th
Congress. H.R. 1301 is an essentially identical piece of
legislation.

"The introduction of H.R. 1301 with so many original co-sponsors, so
early in this session of Congress, is very encouraging," said ARRL
President Kay Craigie, N3KN. "Several additional members of Congress
already have agreed to be co-sponsors. This bill has momentum, but
introduction is only the first step. Many of the next steps will be
taken as ARRL members contact their US Representatives urging
co-sponsorship and thanking them as they sign on to the bill."

If Congress approves the legislation, and it is signed by the
president, H.R. 1301 would require the FCC to amend its Part 97
Amateur Service rules to apply the three-part test of the PRB-1
federal pre-emption policy to include homeowners' association
regulations and deed restrictions, often referred to as "covenants,
conditions, and restrictions" (CC&Rs). At present, PRB-1 only
applies to state and local zoning laws and ordinances. The FCC has
been reluctant to extend the same legal protections to include such
private land-use agreements without direction from Congress.

H.R. 1301 has been referred to the House Energy and Commerce
Committee. Rep Greg Walden, W7EQI (R-OR), chairs that panel's
Communications and Technology Subcommittee, which will consider the
measure. The League had worked with Walden on the 2014 bill during
the 113th Congress.

Among H.R. 1301 initial co-sponsors is Rep Joe Courtney (D-CT), who
attended the ARRL National Centennial Convention last summer to
speak with League officials and those attending the event about the
earlier bill.

Craigie encouraged ARRL members to urge their US House members to
sign on to the bill as a co-sponsor. The ARRL has an H.R. 1301
resources page on its website at, http://www.arrl.org/hr-1301 . If
the House member is already a co-sponsor, call the member's local
office or send an e-mail via the member's official website to
express their thanks. She called on League members to encourage
other hams to do the same, and to be sure to refer to the bill by
its number, H.R. 1301.

"Remember what those pile-ups on the W1AW portable stations sounded
like last year?" Craigie said. "Let's be that avid in calling for
even greater support in Congress for this essential legislation."
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