ARRL

ARRL General Bulletin ARLB015 (2004)

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ARLB015 Minor FCC amateur rule changes effective June 1

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ARRL Bulletin 15  ARLB015
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  May 7, 2004
To all radio amateurs 

SB QST ARL ARLB015
ARLB015 Minor FCC amateur rule changes effective June 1

The FCC says minor amendments to various Amateur Radio rules become
effective June 1. The regulatory changes, which the FCC made on its
own motion rather than in reaction to any petitions, appeared May 5
in the Federal Register.

"This document makes minor amendments to various rule sections to
clarify or eliminate duplicative language or conform them with other
rule sections," the FCC said.

Among other changes, the most significant involved revising the
wording of Section 97.307(d), which defines spurious emissions. The
updated language imposes a slightly higher standard on newer
transmitters or amplifiers of any power level. Starting June 1, the
rule will provide that:

   * the mean power of any spurious emission from HF transmitters or
external RF power amplifiers installed after January 1, 2003, must
be at least 43 dB below the mean power of the fundamental emission.

   * the mean power of any spurious emission from HF transmitters or
external RF power amplifiers installed on or before January 1, 2003,
must not exceed 50 mW and must be at least 40 dB below the mean
power of the fundamental emission. If the mean power output of such
as transmitter is less than 5 W, the attenuation must be at least 30
dB.

Still exempt from the provisions of Section 97.307(d) are
transmitters built before April 15, 1977, or those first marketed
before January 1, 1978.

The FCC also has redefined what constitutes an Amateur Radio
operator to reflect the advent of the Universal Licensing System
(ULS) electronic licensee database. Under the revised Section
97.3(a)(1) an amateur operator is "a person named in an amateur
operator/primary license station grant on the ULS consolidated
licensee database to be the control operator of an amateur station."
The current rule defines an amateur operator as "a person holding a
written authorization to be the control operator of an amateur
station."

Anther change eliminates Technician or Technician with Element 1
credit licensees from the classes of operators permitted to prepare
Element 1 (5 WPM Morse) and Element 2 (Technician written)
examinations.

The Commission ordered the rule changes within the context of a
larger, wide-ranging Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) in WT
Docket 04-140. That NPRM addresses several Amateur Radio-related
petitions and proposes revisions to operating privileges. The FCC
continues to seek comments on these proposals. Comments are due by
Tuesday, June 15, and reply comments by Wednesday, June 30. Among
other changes, the FCC has recommended adopting the ARRL's "Novice
refarming" plan.
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