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ARRL General Bulletin ARLB079 (1999)

ARLB079 League Opposes LA County Experimental Video Proposal

QST de W1AW  
ARRL Bulletin 79  ARLB079
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  September 24, 1999
To all radio amateurs 

ARLB079 League Opposes LA County Experimental Video Proposal

The ARRL has asked the FCC to deny an experimental license
application by Los Angeles County, California, to develop a public
safety video system on the 2.4 GHz band. The LA County proposal,
filed August 9, seeks FCC authorization to develop an experimental
system using four 10-MHz channels to transmit video images from
helicopter-borne cameras to five remote receiving sites with active
tracking antennas. The signals then would be retransmitted via
terrestrial links to the public safety agencies involved.

In its objection, filed September 23 with the FCC, the League called
the LA County proposal a ''foot in the door'' toward gaining a
permanent berth in the 2.4 GHz band. ''It is obvious from the
experimental proposal that the County wishes to construct the entire
system and then simply stay there,'' the League said. The ARRL said
the FCC should authorize nothing more than a single 10-MHz video
channel for a single transmitter aboard a single helicopter, to
allow interference studies to be conducted.

LA County already is licensed for video operations on a single 2.4
GHz channel but says it encounters operational conflicts with
broadcasters. The proposal targets the 2402-2448 MHz band,
characterizing it as ''underutilized'' and asserting that current
occupants--including Amateur Radio and industrial, scientific and
medical instrumentation--would not suffer harmful interference.
Amateurs have a primary domestic allocation at 2402-2417 MHz.

The League's objection said LA County's 2.4 GHz monitoring study was
''significantly flawed'' and ''woefully insufficient,'' and that LA
County would be unable to avoid causing ''constant, harmful
interference'' to incumbent users. Citing ATV repeaters and video
links as well as proposed amateur satellite operation, the League
said, the 2.4 GHz band enjoys significant use by the LA area Amateur
Radio community. The League said these systems, and those of other
amateur users, would be ''seriously degraded or displaced'' by
deployment of the proposed experimental system.

The decision to grant the proposed experimental license is up to the
FCC Office of Engineering and Technology's Experimental Licensing
Division. In making its decision, however, the OET is expected to
consult with the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, which oversees
Amateur Radio and the other affected services on 2.4 GHz.

In a separate, but related, filing on September 1, Los Angeles
County and the cities of Los Angeles, Long Beach and Burbank
requested a declaratory ruling from the FCC to ''clarify its rules to
facilitate public safety operations on the 2450-2483 MHz band'' and
to explore other spectrum allocations ''to accommodate the growing
demand for public safety airborne operation.''


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