ARRL

ARRL General Bulletin ARLB019 (2006)

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ARLB019 FCC releases long-awaited ''Omnibus'' Amateur Radio Report and Order

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ARRL Bulletin 19  ARLB019
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  October 12, 2006
To all radio amateurs 

SB QST ARL ARLB019
ARLB019 FCC releases long-awaited ''Omnibus'' Amateur Radio Report and Order

Ending a protracted waiting period, the FCC's Report and Order in
the so-called ''Omnibus'' Amateur Radio proceeding, WT Docket 04-140,
was adopted October 4 and released October 10, 2006. In it, the FCC
adopted nearly all of the proposed changes in the Notice of Proposed
Rulemaking released back in 2004. The FCC has:

+ expanded the phone subbands in the 75 and 40 meter bands;

+ permitted auxiliary stations to transmit on portions of the 2
meter band;

+ permitted the use of spread spectrum on 222-225 MHz;

+ permitted amateurs to retransmit communications from the
International Space Station;

+ permitted amateur licensees to designate a specific Amateur Radio
club to receive their call sign in memoriam;

+ prohibited an applicant from filing more than one application for
a specific vanity call sign;

+ eliminated certain restrictions on equipment manufacturers;

+ permitted Amateur Radio stations in Alaska and surrounding waters
more flexibility in providing emergency communications;

+ clarified that ''amateur stations may, at all times and on all
frequencies authorized to the control operator, make transmissions
necessary to meet essential communication needs and to facilitate
relief actions'';

+ deleted the frequency bands and segments specified for RACES
stations;

and

+ deleted the requirement for public announcement of test locations
and times.

In addition, the FCC took several other miscellaneous actions.

In ''refarming'' the frequencies currently authorized to Novice and
Technician Plus licensees, the Commission increased the voice
segments for General, Advanced and Amateur Extra licensees.

On 75 meters, Generals will be able to use voice from 3800-4000 kHz,
an increase of 50 kHz. Advanced class licensees will be able to use
voice from 3700-4000, an increase of 75 kHz, and Amateur Extras will
be able to use voice from 3600 to 4000 kHz, a generous increase of
150 kHz.

On 40 meters, Advanced and Extra Class licensees will be able to use
voice from 7125-7300 kHz, an increase of 25 kHz. General class
licensees will be able to use voice on 7175-7300 kHz, an increase of
50 kHz.

On 15 meters, General class operators will have phone privileges on
21275-21450 kHz, an increase of 25 kHz.

ARRL President Joel Harrison, W5ZN, expressed the ARRL's gratitude
to the FCC Commissioners in a letter dated October 11: ''On behalf of
the ARRL and the Commission's licensees in the Amateur Radio Service
I want to express appreciation for your release yesterday of the
Report and Order in WT Docket 04-140 (FCC 06-149) amending Part 97
of the Commission's Rules. The Commission's action in clearing this
pending proceeding will assist the Amateur Radio Service in meeting
its objectives, particularly with regard to providing emergency and
public service communications.''

The changes will go into effect 30 days after the R&O is published
in the Federal Register.
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