FCC and regulatory matters will fill the lion’s share of the agenda when the ARRL Executive Committee (EC) meets on October 22 in Chicago. Topping the list of action items is a review of enforcement strategies, a follow-on to discussions during the July 2015 meeting of the ARRL Board of Directors. This would include “ongoing consideration of revised plans and strategies for improved Amateur Radio enforcement, and actions to implement these.” It also would address revisions to the ARRL Official Observer program.
The EC also will review the status of — and comments filed on — the ARRL Petition for Rule Making (RM 11759) to the FCC, seeking changes in the 80 and 75 meter RTTY/data and phone/image subbands and to restore 80 meter privileges for certain license classes, among other changes in those bands. The Petition was filed in January.
The Committee also will discuss comments filed in response to its request to the FCC to delete restrictions on symbol rates for data communication and the establishment of a 2.8 kHz maximum occupied bandwidth for data emissions below 29.7 MHz.
The FCC’s April 2016 Report and Order, Order, and Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (R&O/NPRM) in ET Docket 15-99 also will be up for discussion, The FCC has yet to approve operational rules for the 2200 and 630 meter bands and finalizing the allocation of the 2200-meter band. The R&O/NPRM raised several questions regarding how Amateur Radio might coexist with PLC systems used to control the power grid.
The Committee also will hear updates on various regulatory items affecting Amateur Radio. Some of the FCC proceedings date back 3 years or more.
In legislative matters, among other issues, the EC will hear a report on the status of H.R. 1301 — the Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015 — with a focus on strategies to gain approval for the proposed legislation in the US Senate during the so-called “lame duck” session of Congress following the elections in November.
The Committee also will consider its formal response to recently enacted changes to California’s “distracted driving” rules. The League wants to have Amateur Radio mobile use exempted.
The Executive Committee is tasked by the ARRL Bylaws to address League matters between regular Board meetings.