HCARC Happenings

October 2015


News for Amateur Radio Operators In and Around Hillsdale County



The next club meeting will be Thursday, October 15 at 7pm at the First United Methodist Church, 45 N Manning in Hillsdale (map).  Park in city lot F and use the east entrance off the alley and follow the signsEveryone welcome!


There was no club meeting in September.



This month the Ham Breakfast will be held on Saturday, October 10 at 8am at the Sidekick Cafe, 4682 Hudson Road in Osseo (map).  Come and join us for a meal or just coffee.


The September ham breakfast was held at Madigans in Litchfield and was attended by six hams.



The next Board Meeting will be held on Wednesday, October 7 at 6pm at the First United Methodist Church, 45 N Manning in Hillsdale (map).  All members welcome.



Membership Report

Club membership stood at 15 as of September 30.  No activity in September.



New Hams

There are four new hams in the county.  Terry Arnold KE0FVB was granted his Technician license on September 21 in Missouri and has since moved to Hillsdale County.  Monique Kawalek KD8WJL and her family, including son Spencer KD8ZKK recently moved to the county from Ohio.  Nathan VanWieren KI8EH recently updated his FCC ULS information indicating that he now lives in the county.  Please welcome these hams when you hear them on the air.



Club Leadership Positions Available

Two club leadership positions remain open.  The Vice President and Secretary positions had no nominations during annual elections last year or subsequent special elections.  Those interested should check the club constitution on our website for information about officer duties and election procedures.  Feel free to contact any of the current club leadership for more information.  Club leadership elections for 2016 will be held on November 19.



QCWA Recognizes 105-Year-Old Radio Amateur’s 90 Years Of Hamming

The Quarter Century Wireless Association honored 105-year-old Charlie Hellman W2RP of Hastings-on-Hudson, New York, for his 90 years in Amateur Radio.  On August 31 the QCWA presented a “90 Year Continuous Licensed Certificate Award” to Hellman, who got his ham ticket in 1925, when he was 15 years old.  (ARRL story)



Vanity Call Sign Fee Eliminated

Effective September 3 applicants are able to file all vanity applications (new and renewal) without having to pay a regulatory fee.  The FCC decided earlier this year to eliminate the regulatory fee component for Amateur Radio vanity call signs because their costs exceed the amount collected in fees.  The fee was most recently raised from $16.10 to $21.40 in September 2014.  (ARRL info)



FCC Computer Systems Upgrade Completed

Scheduled FCC computer system upgrades took a couple of days longer than anticipated, but the Universal Licensing System (ULS) came back online early on September 10, along with FCC e-mail and other systems that had been down for several days.  The Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS) and the Electronic Document Management System (EDOCS) returned to service on September 8.  During the outage, which began on September 2, it was not possible to file any Amateur Radio applications, including examination session documents, or conduct any license or application searches.  (ARRL story)



Emergency Activities

ARES volunteers in California's Amador County supported communications at a Red Cross shelter that housed evacuees from the Butte Wildfire.  According to ARRL Sacramento Valley Section District 3 EC Greg Kruckewitt KG6SJT, volunteers were called out on September 9 and had communications set up at the shelter by midnight.  (ARRL story)


The Hurricane Watch Net activated on September 30 for Hurricane Joaquin, a Category 1 storm packing maximum sustained winds of 75 MPH.  A hurricane warning is in effect for the central Bahamas and the storm is expected to impact the east coast of the United States.  (ARRL story)



FCC Amateur Radio License Database Activity In Hillsdale County

09/01/15 WB8CCK, PLAYFORD, DONALD F, license renewed

09/22/15 KG8EF, HANNEMAN, CHARLES F, License Status Set to Expired  (SK 04/10/11)

09/25/15 KI8EH, VAN WIEREN, NATHAN J, license renewed, address updated from out of county



PRB-1 Update

Federal PRB-1 legislation HR 1301, the Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015, was introduced in March and now has 99 cosponsors as of September 30, up from 94 on August 31, and including Tim Walberg of Michigan's 7th district, which includes Hillsdale County.  Click here to follow the progress of HR 1301.


A companion Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015 bill was introduced in the US Senate on June 25.  Currently there is only one cosponsor.  Several county hams have signed letters to Michigan’s senators urging them to support the bill.  Click here to follow the progress of S.1685.


Both measures would direct the FCC to extend its rules relating to reasonable accommodation of Amateur Service communications to private land-use restrictions.  ARRL has created The Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015 webpage to provide a clearinghouse for all information on these identical pieces of legislation and includes information on how to contact your representatives.




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.  If you have ideas for programs or are willing to present something yourself, contact a member of club leadership.


The ARRL Board of Directors has approved a $10 increase in the League’s annual dues rate, effective January 1, 2016.  In doing so, the Board adopted a recommendation of the Administration & Finance Committee.  ARRL basic dues have been held at $39 a year since 2001.  You can save money by renewing for up to three years before the end of the year.  (ARRL story)


Microsoft Windows 10 free upgrades began downloading on July 29.  The free upgrade is available for a year.  Microsoft hopes to encourage customers to embrace its new operating system by offering a free refresh for multiple devices.  Click here to read the latest updates from Digital Trends.



Upcoming Events

October 3 – GRAHamfest (Wyoming)

October 7 – Board Meeting

October 10 – Ham Breakfast

October 15 – Club Meeting

October 18 – Kalamazoo Hamfest

November 4 – Board Meeting

November 14 – Ham Breakfast

November 14-15 – Fort Wayne Hamfest

November 19 – Club Meeting

November 19 – Leadership Elections


Send us your comments and suggestions to K8HRC@arrl.net

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