Amateur Radio Newsline Report 2048 for Friday, January 27,2017

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Amateur Radio Newsline Report Number 2048 with a release date of Friday, January 27,2017 to follow in 5-4-3-2-1.

The following is a QST. There's a new leader at the helm of the FCC. The Amateur Radio Parity Act scores a victory in the House -- and in Missouri, state lawmakers consider their local version of the federal bill. All this and more as Amateur Radio Newsline Report 2048 comes your way right now.
   
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BILLBOARD CART

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AMATEUR RADIO PARITY ACT PASSES IN HOUSE

NEIL/ANCHOR: Our top story is the Amateur Radio Parity Act. Only days after its introduction on Capitol Hill, the bill, also known as H.R. 555, was passed by the House of Representatives on unanimous consent under a suspension of House rules. Under the measure, FCC rules would prohibit deed restrictions by groups such as homeowners associations that bar amateur radio communications.

ARRL Hudson Division Director Mike Lisenco N2YBB said in an email message to members that he was encouraged by the swiftness of the lawmakers' action. The measure moves next to the Senate, where its predecessor H.R. 1301, died last year after overwhelmingly winning approval in the House. Lisenco, who has been involved in the legislative push, urged hams to raise their voices once again for its passage by sending supportive emails to Congress.

In an email to members, ARRL President Rick Roderick K5UR pressed hams to strengthen the grassroots effort nationally. He wrote in an email message sent to members: QUOTE "Keep going. Now is the time to charge forward with that same momentum to the Senate. We can do it!" ENDQUOTE

(ARRL)
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MISSOURI LAWMAKERS CONSIDER STATE PARITY ACT

NEIL/ANCHOR: Meanwhile, Missouri lawmakers have been holding hearings on a state version of the parity act as we learn from Amateur Radio Newsline's Christian Cudnik K0STH.

CHRISTIAN: House Bill 136, also known as the Missouri Amateur Radio Parity Act, was before a committee hearing on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2017. It was the third hearing scheduled at high noon. Roughly, twenty Missouri hams came to the Capital prepared to speak on behalf of the bill.

Due to time constraints, only four licensed amateurs were allowed to testify -- one of which was Ward Silver NØAX.

Rep. Mike Moon, from District 157, voiced his basic support for the amateur radio service, but raised his concern about "violating" private land-use agreements. Additional questions about the size of antennas were asked from several district representatives.

Larry Scantlan, KE0KZ is one of the leading advocates of Bill 136. He said:  “I believe we could have done a better job in answering the questions about antenna size. I believe that overall, the committee received the information they needed to make a favorable decision to pass it out to their committee.”

The HOAs were also represented. Jim Durham testified in opposition. However, in the end, he stated that he believed that [quote] “something positive could be worked out to satisfy everyone.” [endquote]

Next, Bill 136 waits for the committee to bring it up for a vote.

In the meantime, organizers encourage Amateur Radio Operators in Missouri to contact their representatives and ask for their support. This information, other ham radio related resources and an interactive blog can be found at marpa.us.

For Amateur Radio Newsline in Missouri, I'm Christian Cudnik K0STH.


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NEW CHAIRMAN AT HELM OF FCC

NEIL/ANCHOR: Back in Washington, D.C., the federal Amateur Radio Parity Act has already drawn praise from the nation's new top telecommunications regulator, Ajit Pai, shortly after being named new chairman of the FCC by President Donald Trump. Pai, the commission's senior Republican, had only praise for the action taken by the House of Representatives in passing H.R. 555, calling it an important piece of legislation. Originally named to the commission under President Barack Obama, Pai is an advocate of limited government involvement and free-market forces. His first open meeting of the FCC is set for Tuesday, Jan. 31.

(NPR)

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D-STAR BECOMES FIREFIGHTING TOOL

NEIL/ANCHOR: Firefighting and ham radio operation are not a new combination but in one Texas community, firefighters are going a step further. Here's Amateur Radio Newsline's Paul Braun WD9GCO.

PAUL: Most hams are aware of how ARES and RACES coordinate with local emergency services to provide communications assistance in the event of a disaster. The Howard County Volunteer Fire Department in Big Spring, Texas, took a much more proactive approach. I spoke with Tommy Sullivan, KG5HRK, department chief about their program:

SULLIVAN: W5AW, the Big Spring Amateur Radio Club’s been in existence in Howard County for twenty to thirty years. Lloyd Duck was the president of the club and he approached me about joining in or helping them to buy new D-STAR equipment where they could do D-RATS and all of that, and then we discussed how the fire department could help them get that and how would the fire department benefit. And after we discussed it, and really looked at it and saw that in a major disaster where we lose our radio tower and all of that with this D-STAR and the amateur radio club we could still communicate, we could still transmit our ICS forms, could transmit pictures from the scene to the emergency operations center here in Howard County and also to the state operations center in Austin.

PAUL: Sullivan said that the program's been successful so far:

SULLIVAN: Out of fifty firefighters I’ve got twelve now that are licensed amateur radio operators to help supplement the fire department with the amateur radio and vice-versa because everybody succeeds better when we all work together. I didn’t want to wait until the disaster and try to figure out another backup plan. I want to go into it where we already have this in place and everything operational, plan for the worst and hope for the best.

PAUL: Sullivan is hoping their program will serve as a model, since he feels this is a very important idea:

SULLIVAN: Maybe other fire departments will take our lead. We don’t have a chance of failing this — we’ve got to succeed the first time. If we walk into it and go, “Hey - our system’s impenetrable and infallible” then we’re thinking in the wrong direction.

PAUL: And yes, Sullivan was talking to me from an active fire scene, although one that his crew had under control.

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I’m Paul Braun, WD9GCO

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HAM AND EGGS, BUT MOSTLY HAMS

NEIL/ANCHOR: We radio operators love to chew the rag but there's nothing like chewing on a waffle or some flapjacks in the company of friends - as we hear from Amateur Radio Newsline's Mike Askins KE5CXP.

MIKE'S REPORT: The Willits Amateur Radio Society W6MMM has enjoyed 1,250 days of ham for breakfast. That's right, the Willits, California club, founded in 1992, considers itself one of the more social clubs out there. So when they gathered on Saturday, January 14 for the latest in a long series of breakfasts, eggs, pancakes, sausage and coffee were on the agenda. The club has more than 50 members and its constitution states that the group's objective is to promote interest in fellowship and fun in amateur radio and to further the cooperation between Mendocino County amateur radio operators. Members take part in health care drills too, testing radios throughout the county and responding when the Offices of Emergency Services needs help getting messages through during storms and other events.

Of course, there are also those breakfasts at a place called Lumberjack's Restaurant, right there in Willits. As the club notes on its Facebook page, you don't need to be a ham to join the group and share some ham and eggs.

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Mike Askins KE5CXP.

(WILLITS AMATEUR RADIO SOCIETY)


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STRONG TALK ON WEAK SIGNALS FROM NOBEL LAUREATE

NEIL/ANCHOR: If you use JT65 or WSPR, you probably know about Joe Taylor K1JT. Now some hams in Puerto Rico will get to know him in person. Amateur Radio Newsline's Heather Embee KB3TZD has that story.

HEATHER: Software developer Joe Taylor K1JT will be an honored guest at the Fifth Annual ARRL Puerto Rico State Convention where he will talk about DXing with weak signals. The convention is taking place Friday, January 27th through Sunday the 29th. Joe, a Nobel Laureate and a DXer, was the Dayton Hamvention Amateur of the Year in 2016. The Princeton, New Jersey ham has developed and improved digital protocols for weak-signal communication on the ham bands using such modes as JT65 and WSPR. In 1993, Joe won the Nobel Prize in Physics for discovering a new type of pulsar which had impact on the study of gravitation. He is a professor emeritus at Princeton University.

The convention was organized by the Caribbean Amateur Radio Group and the Puerto Rico Amateur Radio League. If you can't be there in person to hear Joe, be listening for Special Event station W1AW/KP4 which will be on the air while the convention is going on.

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Heather Embee KB3TZD.

(ARRL)


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BREAK HERE:

Time for you to identify your station. We are the Amateur Radio Newsline, heard on bulletin stations around the world, including the West Chester Amateur Radio Club repeater WC8VOA in West Chester, Ohio, on Monday nights.


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AN HF HOMECOMING ACROSS THE MILES

NEIL/ANCHOR: Yes, you CAN go home again - especially if you're a ham and your far-away hometown is Hull, in the North of England. Amateur Radio Newsline's Caryn Eve Murray KD2GUT has that story.

CARYN: What attracts the interest of a well-travelled ham when tuning around the bands? How about a special event station celebrating his town of birth? That's what happened this week to Amateur Radio Newsline's correspondent Ed Durrant DD5LP, who shares that experience with us.

 +++++ GB0HCC contact audio +++++++


ED'S REPORT: As you heard towards the end of my QSO band conditions and QRM were not the best however I was glad to get the QSO with the Hull, UK-based special event station GB0HCC which is celebrating the city of Hull in the north of England being the UK's city of culture for 2017. Hull was originally the UK's largest fishing port but later developed many industries, small and large. It's where I grew up and got my Amateur Radio license in the seventies. It is great to see the latest changes to this adaptive city and to see the recognition of the Arts in the award of the UKs city of culture 2017.
Good luck to the various Amateur Radio groups who will use the GB0HCC callsign around the Hull area through the year. For further details please checkout the GB0HCC page on qrz.com.

Also heard on the bands this week was a station we announced on ARNewsline a few weeks ago. VE100VIMY is a Canadian special event station to commemorate the battle of Vimy Ridge in World War one, some 100 years ago. The call sign will move around Canada. when I contacted it, it was in the VE3 prefix area being kept very busy with calls.

+++++++++ VE100VIMY contact audio ++++++

Finally Tom, OH6VDA from Finland would like all to know that the "OF" call signs coming from Finland during 2017 are to celebrate 100 years of independence for Finland. All Finnish stations may change their "OH" prefix to "OF" so Tom was operating the OH2K station as OF2K when I contacted him.

++++++++++ OF2K contact audio +++++++

So even when atmospheric conditions are not good it's always worth tuning the bands. You never know what you might find.

This is Ed Durrant DD5LP for ARNewsline.

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MORE ACTIVATIONS FOR K2BSA

NEIL/ANCHOR: Radio Scouts are finishing up the month of January with some more activations, as we hear from Amateur Radio Newsline's Bill Stearns NE4RD.

BILL: This week in Radio Scouting we have 2 activations of the K2BSA callsign, 1 activation from Scout Camps on the Air, and planning for the National Scout Jamboree and Jamboree on the Air.

Bryan Gonderinger, AF0W, will be activating K2BSA/0 at Merit Badge College in Longmont, CO, on January 28th.  Scouts will be working on their Radio Merit Badge along with many other opportunities for scouts to earn badges at the Mountain View District's event.

Thomas Schuessler, N5HYP, will activating K2BSA/5 at a Radio Merit Badge workshop at the National Scout Museum in Irving, TX, on February 4th.  This is an exciting opportunity for scouts to visit this active station and the museum.

Over on the Scout Camps on the Air site, we have Thomas Kisner, KN6Q, will be activating KE5BSA at the SilverStar Merit Badge College in Fort Worth, TX, on February 4th.  Thomas will be active on 20 meters on 14.290 plus or minus the QRM.

We here at the K2BSA group are actively scheduling our transportation and arrivals to the National Scout Jamboree to be held in July from the 15th to the 28th.  We are very excited about the opportunity to work with scouts and our sponsors on making Radio Scouting a part of this great adventure for the youth.  Details of the operation are well into the planning stages and expect K2BSA to be on the air on most bands and  on satellite throughout the event.  We'd like to thank Icom America, DX Engineering, and MFJ Enterprises for their support of this event.

With February approaching, it's time to start locking in the location for your JOTA event.  Recruit a champion to continue the dialog of JOTA at district committee meetings and round tables.  Join us on the Radio Scouting net the 2nd Thursday of the month on EchoLink in conference *JOTA-365* or node number 480809 at 9pm Central.

For more information on K2BSA and Radio Scouting, please visit http://www.k2bsa.net/.

For Amateur Radio Newsline and the K2BSA Amateur Radio Association, this is Bill Stearns NE4RD.

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THE WORLD OF DX

Listen for the call signs J5UAP and 6W2SC as Peter HA3AUI visits Guinea-Bissau and Senegal between now and early March. He is operating on CW. QSL cards should be sent directly to his home call.

A group of German operators is activating TU5MH from the Ivory Coast through the 2nd of February. They have three stations and can be found on 80m to 10m on CW, SSB and RTTY. Send QSL cards via Club Log OQRS. Logs will also be uploaded to Logbook of The World.

Members of a Dominican Republic club have put Beata Island on the air until the 1st of February. Be listening for their callsign HI1UD. The IOTA reference is NA-122. The expedition's QSL Manager is W2CCW.

(IRISH RADIO TRANSMITTERS SOCIETY)

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KICKER: USING CODE IN A FLASH

NEIL/ANCHOR: It wasn't a straight key, or even a bug, but a flashlight - also known as a torch - that helped rescue an injured Army reservist recently when he was visiting Seatown in Dorset in the UK. Amateur Radio Newsline's Jeremy Boot G4NJH has that story.

JEREMY: Sgt. Tim Robinson broke his leg after slipping on some seaweed during a walk on the Jurassic Coast, east of Lyme Regis. Without a mobile phone, he could not telephone for help. According to some media accounts, he crawled and staggered in the direction of his hotel for about two hours. As darkness crept in, however, the injured reservist realized he still had one reliable means of communication - his pocket flashlight. He signaled "SOS" in Morse Code in the direction of the hotel where the Derbyshire couple were staying more than a mile away. He had hoped that's where his wife Paula would be looking for him.

He repeated the Code message three more times. His wife, who was at a car park, followed the signals and responded. The couple exchanged signals five more times until she located him. After she summoned help, a lifeboat transported him to Lyme Regis and he was transferred there to a hospital. He later told his rescuers "I've had two tours of Afghanistan and one in Iraq and there were a few incidents over there, but nothing quite as dramatic as what happened on this beach".

For Amateur Radio Newsline, I'm Jeremy Boot G4NJH

(BBC, THE MIRROR)

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NEWSCAST CLOSE: With thanks to Alan Labs; the ARRL; BBC; CQ Magazine; Hap Holly and the Rain Report; K2BSA Amateur Radio Association; The Mirror; National Public Radio; Ohio-Penn DX Bulletin; QRZ.COM; Southgate Amateur Radio News; Ted Randall's QSO Radio Show; Willits Amateur Radio Society; WTWW Shortwave; the YL International Single Sideband System; and you our listeners, that's all from the Amateur Radio Newsline. Please send emails to our address at newsline@arnewsline.org. More information is available at Amateur Radio Newsline's only official website located at www.arnewsline.org.

For now, with Caryn Eve Murray, KD2GUT, at the news desk in New York, and our news team worldwide, I'm Neil Rapp WB9VPG in Bloomington Indiana saying 73 and as always we thank you for listening.

Amateur Radio Newsline(tm) is Copyright 2017. All rights reserved.

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