Hillsdale Communicator

October 2019


News For Amateur Radio Operators In And Around Hillsdale County


Club Meetings

Next meeting date will be determined by the board.


There was no club meeting in September.



Ham Breakfast

This month the Ham Breakfast will be held on Saturday, October 12, at 8am at the Sidekick Cafe, 4682 Hudson Road in Osseo (map).  Come and join us for a meal or just coffee.  Everyone welcome.


The September breakfast was held at the Coffee Shop in North Adams and was attended by four amateurs.



Board Meeting

The next Board meeting will be held on Saturday, October 5, at 10:30am at the First United Methodist Church, 45 North Manning in Hillsdale (map).  All club members are welcome.  Use the south entrance off city parking lot F.


There was no board meeting in September.



Membership Report

Club membership stood at 17 as of September 30.  No activity during the month.



Monday Night Net Control Stations Needed

We have some Monday night net control slots open.  Serving as net control station builds your skills and earns you extra points towards the net exceptional participation certificate.  If you would like to serve as a net control station once a month please let a member of club leadership know.  Check the schedule for available dates.



FCC Proposes To Make All Universal Licensing System Filings Electronic

The FCC is seeking comment on a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) that is part of an overall plan to transition completely to electronic filing, licenses, authorizations, and correspondence.  The notice proposes to make all filings to the Universal Licensing System (ULS) completely electronic, expand electronic filing and correspondence elements for related systems, and require applicants to provide an email address on the FCC Forms related to these systems.  Although much of the FCC’s ULS filings are already electronic, the changes suggested in the NPRM would require all Amateur Radio Service applications to be filed electronically.  Under current rules, Amateur Radio applications may still be filed manually, with the exception of those filed by Volunteer Examiner Coordinators.  (ARRL story)



Dayton Hamvention Signs 5-Year Contract With Greene County Expo Center

The Dayton Amateur Radio Association has signed a 5-year agreement to keep Dayton Hamvention at the Greene County Expo Center.  “It has been a wonderful experience working with the Expo Center team in the development of this agreement,” said Hamvention General Chairman Jack Gerbs WB8SCT.  “With the 5-year agreement signed, the Expo Center and Hamvention can move forward with additional enhancements to the facilities.”  (ARRL story)



FCC Seeks To Streamline Hearings Process

The FCC is asking for public comments on procedural changes that, if adopted, would streamline many administrative hearings.  “Currently, these hearings typically are conducted like trials in civil litigation and include, among other things, live testimony before an administrative law judge, cross-examination of witnesses, and an initial decision by the administrative law judge that is subject to review by the Commission,” the FCC said in a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.  The FCC said its proposals “are designed to supplement the Commission’s current administrative law judge referral process and promote more efficient resolution of hearings.”  (ARRL story)



ARRL Renews Request To Replace Symbol Rate With Bandwidth Limit

ARRL renewed its request that the FCC delete symbol-rate limits for data transmissions in the Amateur Service rules.  ARRL asked the FCC to couple the removal of the symbol rate limits with the adoption of a 2.8 kHz bandwidth limit.  In response to a 2013 ARRL Petition for Rulemaking, the FCC proposed deleting the symbol-rate limits but declined to replace them with the 2.8 kHz bandwidth that ARRL wanted.  (ARRL story)



ARRL Thanks Official Observers, Volunteer Monitor Program Is Set To Debut

ARRL has expressed deep appreciation to the hundreds of volunteers who gave their time as Official Observers (OOs) to help preserve the integrity of the Amateur Radio frequencies.  The Official Observer program has served the Amateur Radio community and assisted the FCC Enforcement Bureau for more than 85 years.  The OO program is giving way to the new Volunteer Monitor (VM) program, established as part of a formal partnership between ARRL and the FCC.  ARRL and the FCC signed a Memorandum of Understanding earlier this year that establishes the Volunteer Monitor program as a successor to the Official Observers.  (ARRL story)



Weather Channel Cites “Old School Tech” Amateur Radio As Storm Resource

Julio Ripoll WD4R, Amateur Radio Assistant Coordinator of WX4NHC at the National Hurricane Center (NHC), explained Amateur Radio’s role during severe weather situations to interviewers from The Weather Channel.  In a September 16 segment headlined as “Using Old School Tech During a Storm,” Ripoll told Weather Channel interviewers Rick Knabb and Mike Bettes that information NHC forecasters receive via Amateur Radio volunteers and spotters “sometimes fills in gaps they can’t get from satellites or reconnaissance.”  (Weather Channel video)



FCC Amateur Radio License Database Activity In Hillsdale County





Meeting Programs: We are always looking for interesting ideas for meeting programs.  It doesn’t always have to be about ham radio.  It could be something community related or maybe you know somebody that would be an interesting speaker.  Club Vice President Dan Sprow KC8RYF leads the effort to arrange meeting programs for the club.  Contact Dan or any member of club leadership if you have ideas for programs or are willing to present something yourself.


Michigan State Parks On The Air: Starting April 1, 2017, Michigan hams embarked on the most ambitious on-the-air project ever, the Michigan State Parks on the Air (MSPOTA).  Previous State Park activations on the air around the country have focused on a single weekend.  The Michigan State Parks system as a whole will be 100 years old in 2019.  Some of our parks actually began operation in 1917.  Hence, the celebration began in 2017 and continues through 2019.  That is three years of State Parks on the Air!  Lots of time for activators and chasers alike!  This event includes 117 MDNR Parks & Recreation sites including State Parks, Recreation Areas, Scenic Sites and State Trails rotated over the 3 years.  That adds up to about 50 parks across the state active in each event year.  (More info at MSPOTA website)


Microsoft Announces End Of Support For Windows 7: Microsoft made a commitment to provide 10 years of product support for Windows 7 when it was released on October 22, 2009.  When this 10-year period ends, Microsoft will discontinue Windows 7 support so that we can focus our investment on supporting newer technologies and great new experiences.  The specific end of support day for Windows 7 will be January 14, 2020.  (Announcement and FAQ)


Distracted Driving Bills Introduced In State Legislature: There are several bills (HB 4181, HB 4198 and HB 4199) that have been formulated in the Michigan House of Representatives that deal with Distracted Driving.  The Michigan ARRL legislative team has been watching as these bills were introduced in the House.  Amateur Radio was granted an exemption (the use of amateur radio while driving) from being considered a distraction.  The exemption amendment referenced 47 CFR Part 97, 47 CFR Part 90 and a reference to CB radio.  (ARRL Michigan Section post)



Upcoming Events

October 5 – Board Meeting

October 12 – Ham Breakfast

October 12 – NWOARC Fall Hamfest (Lima OH)

October 20 – Kalamazoo Hamfest

November 16-17 – Fort Wayne Hamfest



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