Urgent PRB-1 Update and Final Push to the finish line

Please read BOTH requests con­tained herein!!

Thank you again for your inter­est in this very impor­tant project, and please acknowl­edge your fel­low men and women Hams who have put end­less hours of effort into this under­tak­ing. Please take a look at http://www.miarrlprb1.org/ for the back­ground and addi­tional infor­ma­tion on Michigan’s “grass roots” effort to advance our com­mu­ni­ca­tion abil­i­ties not only for the bet­ter­ment of our hobby in gen­eral, but more impor­tantly, to improve our abil­i­ties to pro­vide assis­tance to our fam­ily, friends, neigh­bors and the pub­lic in gen­eral in their time of need!

Thank you for being there!

Chip Locke

Hol­lis B. Locke II, WB8ALW
Michi­gan ARRL Sec­tion Affil­i­ated Club Coor­di­na­tor
ARRL, the national asso­ci­a­tion for Ama­teur Radio™
(H) 269.216.9999
© 269.998.8122
WB8ALW [at] ARRL [dot] Net


Urgent PRB-1 Update and Final Push to the fin­ish line

Greet­ings to the Hams of Michigan:

On the morn­ing of Decem­ber 9, 2014, the Michi­gan House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Energy and Tech­nol­ogy Com­mit­tee held a hear­ing on SB 0493 with a sub­se­quent roll call vote. The results of that vote was a unan­i­mous pos­i­tive vote and SB 0493 has been reported out of Com­mit­tee favor­ably to the House floor for the bill’s third read­ing and a vote in the days ahead. This unan­i­mous vote matches the unan­i­mous votes our bill received in the Sen­ate Com­mit­tee and the Sen­ate floor.

After the vote on the House floor, if suc­cess­ful, the last stop on this long jour­ney is the Governor’s Office!

I am ask­ing that every­one send another let­ter (below) to their Rep­re­sen­ta­tive in a final push to com­plete our task at hand. Even if you have sent a let­ter (s) pre­vi­ously, now is the time to send it again in order to accom­plish our goal. More let­ters just empha­size how impor­tant this issue is to the hams of Michigan.

If you would like some PRB-1 back­ground, you can visit our web­site at http://www.miarrlprb1.org/

You can find your Representative’s email address here: http://www.house.mi.gov/mhrpublic/

Once you have copied his or her email address, open your email pro­gram and paste the address of your Rep­re­sen­ta­tive into the TO: line.

Then in the CC: line, enter these two email addresses; wb8r [at] arrl [dot] org and wa8qje [at] arrl [dot] net.

Copy and paste the let­ter below into the email body, make the nec­es­sary adjust­ments to get your Representative’s name and address (find that info on their web­site) and then put your infor­ma­tion at the bot­tom of the letter.

Review to make sure all is com­plete and click ‘Send’.

We have this last push to get us over the top! Please help your ham and non ham friends to send a let­ter. Get your spouse and vot­ing age chil­dren to email a let­ter as well. We need to let our rep­re­sen­ta­tives know that we want them to vote yes on this bill.

One last thing: Please accept my per­sonal thanks for all of your sup­port and efforts over the many years that we have been work­ing hard to get where we are today.



Larry Camp, WB8R
ARRL Michi­gan Sec­tion Manager

ARRL, the national asso­ci­a­tion for Ama­teur Radio™
(H) 517.278.0406
© 517.617.4883
wb8r [at] arrl [dot] org
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The Hon­or­able [First Name, Last Name]
[City, State, Zip]

Re: SB 0493

Dear Rep­re­sen­ta­tive [Last name]:

As your con­stituent, I urge your sup­port for SB 0493.

This bill was recently assigned to the House Energy & Tech­nol­ogy Com­mit­tee and in a Com­mit­tee hear­ing on Decem­ber 9, 2014 the bill was passed unan­i­mously out of Com­mit­tee. The his­tory of this bill is unan­i­mous pas­sage in both Sen­ate Com­mit­tee and the Sen­ate floor and now the House Com­mit­tee as well. There is very broad sup­port for SB 0493. The next step is the House floor in the next few days.

Here are some of the details of the rea­sons for this bill:

The pro­lif­er­a­tion of cell phone tow­ers has moti­vated county and munic­i­pal
gov­ern­ments to become increas­ingly aggres­sive in restrict­ing the erec­tion of
com­mu­ni­ca­tion struc­tures. Rec­og­niz­ing this issue, the Fed­eral
Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Com­mis­sion (FCC) issued a rul­ing in 1985 enti­tled PRB-1,
which states that local author­i­ties must “rea­son­ably accom­mo­date”
res­i­den­tial ama­teur radio sta­tion instal­la­tions. Unfor­tu­nately, local
plan­ners and zon­ing offi­cials do not typ­i­cally con­sider fed­eral rul­ings and
gen­er­ally focus on state laws. Cur­rently, thirty other states, includ­ing
Wis­con­sin, Illi­nois, Indi­ana and Ohio have addressed this issue by cod­i­fy­ing
the pro­vi­sions of PRB-1, (Ama­teur Radio Pre­emp­tion, 101 FCC 2d 952), into
state statutes. At this time PRB-1 has not been cod­i­fied into Michi­gan
state statute.

Your sup­port for SB 0493 will address this issue in the State of Michi­gan,
ensur­ing that in times of need ama­teur radio oper­a­tors will be able to
com­mu­ni­cate effec­tively. For over 100 years, Ama­teur Radio has pro­vided
emer­gency com­mu­ni­ca­tions to the pub­lic in times of nat­ural and other
dis­as­ters. All of our time, equip­ment, and effort dur­ing such times are
gladly donated by Ama­teur Radio vol­un­teers. It is with­out cost to the cit­i­zens of Michigan.

In 2013, ama­teur radio oper­a­tors pro­vided vol­un­teer hours to the cit­i­zens of the
State of Michi­gan worth $2,700,000. Help us to ensure that this crit­i­cal
method of com­mu­ni­ca­tions is avail­able when it is most needed.

I ask you seri­ously to con­sider the fol­low­ing in your deci­sion to sup­port SB

This is not an attempt to set new legal prece­dent or give Michi­gan hams
priv­i­leges not already sup­ported by FCC reg­u­la­tions. This bill sim­ply
assures that Michi­gan state law reflects the fed­eral rules regard­ing Ama­teur
Radio Sta­tions. Con­se­quently, any local county, city or other munic­i­pal
gov­ern­ment cre­at­ing ordi­nances regard­ing antenna restric­tions, radio
fre­quency power lim­its or reg­u­lat­ing ama­teur radio sta­tions will be made
aware that a fed­eral rule exists. These enti­ties can then use this rule as
a guide with­out spe­cific or addi­tional restric­tions being placed upon them.
The finan­cial impact of SB 0493 has been deter­mined to be neu­tral to both
state and local governments.

Your lead­er­ship is imper­a­tive and is respect­fully requested on this
impor­tant issue. Please sup­port this com­mon­sense leg­is­la­tion and advise me of
your opin­ion on this impor­tant issue. Thank you for your time and
con­sid­er­a­tion of this request.

With sin­cere appreciation,

[Writ­ten Signature]

[First, Last Name], [Call­sign]
[City, State, Zip]
[Tele­phone Num­ber, if desired]
[email address, if desired]

(Of all the com­mu­ni­ca­tions that we have done in the past, this one is the most impor­tant. Thank you for your efforts and hard work. Let’s push this one over the top!)

Decem­ber 12, 2014

Greet­ings to the Hams of Michigan:

On the morn­ing of Decem­ber 9, 2014, the Michi­gan House of
Rep­re­sen­ta­tives Energy and Tech­nol­ogy Com­mit­tee held a hear­ing on SB
0493 with a sub­se­quent roll call vote. The result of that vote was a
unan­i­mous pos­i­tive vote and SB 0493 has been reported out of Com­mit­tee
favor­ably to the House floor.

Pro­ce­du­rally, the next step is for the Major­ity Floor Leader to bring
our bill for­ward before the House for its sec­ond read­ing, which lays
the ground­work for the bill to have its third read­ing and sub­se­quent
vote by the mem­bers of the House. This is the last step before the
Governor’s desk for his signature.

While we gen­er­ally try to only con­tact Con­gress­men and Con­gress­women
that rep­re­sent us as indi­vid­u­als, there are times where we need to
focus all of our efforts on a group or on an indi­vid­ual. We did this
with a suc­cess­ful cam­paign to com­mit­tee mem­bers to encour­age action and
this is another time to focus our energy.

I am ask­ing that every­one email a let­ter (below-copy and paste into
your email pro­gram) to Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Jim Sta­mas, who is the Major­ity
Floor Leader to ask him to bring SB 0493 for­ward to the House floor for
its 2nd read­ing and its sub­se­quent 3rd read­ing and a vote before the
house. In addi­tion, tele­phone calls will also be helpful.

If these actions do not take place, we will start all over again in the
new leg­isla­tive year. That is how impor­tant this call to action is.
Please send a copy of your let­ter to wb8r [at] arrl [dot] org and
wa8qje [at] arrl [dot] net.

We need all hams in Michi­gan to con­tact Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Sta­mas by email
and tele­phone and he can be reached at:

Jim­Sta­mas [at] house [dot] mi [dot] gov

(517) 373‑1791
Toll Free: (800) 626‑8887

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Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Jim Stamas

153 Capi­tol Build­ing
P.O. Box 30014
Lans­ing, MI 48909

Dear Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Stamas,

SB 0493 has been reported favor­ably out the House Energy and Tech­nol­ogy
Com­mit­tee and is wait­ing to be brought for­ward for its sec­ond read­ing
and its third read­ing and sub­se­quent vote by the mem­bers of the House.

This bill was unan­i­mously approved by the Sen­ate Energy and Tech­nol­ogy
Com­mit­tee, the entire Sen­ate, and again by the House Energy and
Tech­nol­ogy Com­mit­tee. This bill has broad sup­port and needs to come
forth for con­sid­er­a­tion and a vote in the House of Representatives..

I am ask­ing that you ensure that SB 0493 comes before the House in the
wan­ing days of the 2014 Leg­isla­tive session.

Thank you for your consideration,

[First Name Last Name] [Callsign]

[Address] [City, State, Zip]

[Email Address]

[Phone Num­ber] (if you wish)

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Of all the com­mu­ni­ca­tions that we have done in the past, this one is
the most impor­tant. Thank you for your efforts and hard work. Let’s
push this one over the top!

73,   Larry

Larry Camp, WB8R
ARRL Michi­gan Sec­tion Man­ager
ARRL, the national asso­ci­a­tion for Ama­teur Radio™
(H) 517.278.0406
© 517.617.4883
wb8r [at] arrl [dot] org

Call to Action — Senate Bill 0493

Decem­ber 3, 2014

To the hams of Michigan:

This mes­sage below from our State Gov­ern­ment Liai­son Ed Hude, WA8QJE is a call to action for what we hope will the last time for PRB-1 in Michigan.

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To my fel­low Michi­gan Ama­teur Radio Oper­a­tors,  As I write this,
Michi­gan Sen­ate Bill 0493 is sched­uled for a hear­ing on Thurs­day, Decem­ber 4, 2014, before the House Energy & Tech­nol­ogy Committee.   

I want to per­son­ally thank each and every one of you for writ­ing to the Com­mit­tee Mem­bers as well as your House Rep­re­sen­ta­tive for your District.

Once again I am urgently ask­ing for your help. We need each and every one of you to com­mu­ni­cate once again to your cur­rent State of Michi­gan House Rep­re­sen­ta­tive urg­ing them to vote for swift pas­sage of Sen­ate Bill 0493. 

I can­not empha­size how impor­tant your help is needed once again. I as well as your Sec­tion Man­ager Larry Camp and Com­mit­tee mem­bers have spent many hours, count­less tele­phone calls and vis­its with our elected offi­cials work­ing at get­ting Sen­ate Bill 0493 passed. 

Never before have we come this far. Please pass this notice on to every Michi­gan ama­teur radio oper­a­tor, to every ama­teur radio club, to your spouse, to your fam­ily, to short­wave radio enthu­si­asts and every­one
else that you know that is of vot­ing age.. 

Let’s get Michi­gan Sen­ate Bill 0493 passed now by writ­ing to your
Michi­gan House Rep­re­sen­ta­tive now! 

73, Edward Hude, WA8QJE

Michi­gan State Gov­ern­ment Liaison 

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Here is how to send cor­re­spon­dence to your Rep­re­sen­ta­tive:  In order
to make things eas­ier to locate and write your rep­re­sen­ta­tive, please
go to http://www.miarrlprb1.org/.

Once there, click on Sam­ple Let­ters. Click on locate your
rep­re­sen­ta­tive which will take you to their web page where you can find their email address. 

On the same Sam­ple Let­ters page, you can find the text of a let­ter that
you can use by cut­ting and past­ing into your email pro­gram. Don’t for­get to include your Representative’s name and address and your name, call
sign and address. 

Please don’t delay in send­ing your let­ters out. Time is of the essence
as the last day of this leg­isla­tive term is Decem­ber 18. After that, we have to start all over again. We don’t know for sure when the floor vote will be held, so we want to max­i­mize the impact of our let­ters. We need to pull out all the stops here in order to get this project com­pleted for the hams of Michigan. 

I echo Ed’s thanks for all of your efforts and urge you to respond to
our request. 


Larry, WB8R
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ARRL Michi­gan Sec­tion
Sec­tion Man­ager: Larry Camp, WB8R
wb8r [at] arrl [dot] org

SKYWARN Recognition Day 2014 is December 6

SKYWARN Recog­ni­tion Day 2014 gets under way at 0000 UTC on Sat­ur­day, Decem­ber 6 (Fri­day, Decem­ber 5 in US time zones). This will be the 16th annual event. Co-sponsored by ARRL and the National Weather Ser­vice (NWS), the 24-hour event rec­og­nizes the vital pub­lic ser­vice con­tri­bu­tion that Ama­teur Radio oper­a­tors make while work­ing with NWS offices dur­ing severe weather events. It also is aimed at strength­en­ing the bond between Ama­teur Radio oper­a­tors and local NWS offices.

The vol­un­teer SKYWARN pro­gram com­prises nearly 290,000 trained severe weather spot­ters — many of them radio ama­teurs — who iden­tify severe storms and pro­vide NWS fore­cast­ers with reports of local weather con­di­tions dur­ing severe weather events. On SKYWARN Recog­ni­tion Day, Ama­teur Radio oper­a­tors visit National Weather Ser­vice offices and con­tact other sta­tions in the US and around the world. WX4NHC at the National Hur­ri­cane Cen­ter in Miami will be among the NWS sites on the air for the occasion.

SKYWARN Recog­ni­tion Day is not a con­test. The object is for sta­tions to exchange some basic infor­ma­tion with as many NWS sta­tions as pos­si­ble on 80 meters through 70 cen­time­ters (exclud­ing 1.25 meters). Repeater con­tacts are per­mit­ted. Sta­tions exchange call signs, sig­nal reports, loca­tions, and a one– or two-word descrip­tion of the weather at their respec­tive locations.

At KC0NWS in Kansas City, Mis­souri, SKYWARN Recog­ni­tion Day 2013 par­tic­i­pants included a mix of CW, phone, and PSK.

More than 70 ama­teur sta­tions are expected to be on the air from National Weather Ser­vice offices across the US, and some will use spe­cial event call signs. They will oper­ate on var­i­ous modes includ­ing SSB, FM, AM, RTTY, CW, and PSK31. While work­ing dig­i­tal modes, these spe­cial event sta­tions will append “NWS” to their call signs (eg, N0A/NWS). It is sug­gested that a licensed non-National Weather Ser­vice vol­un­teer serve as a con­trol oper­a­tor for sta­tions set up at NWS offices.

The VoIP SKYWARN and Hur­ri­cane nets will par­tic­i­pate in SKYWARN Recog­ni­tion Day. The weekly VoIP SKYWARN/Hurricane Prepa­ra­tion Net will meet 1 hour ear­lier on Decem­ber 5, prior to the offi­cial start of SKYWARN Recog­ni­tion Day. The weekly net and net acti­va­tions for hur­ri­canes employ the EchoLink *WX-TALK* Con­fer­ence server Node #:7203 which is inte­grated with IRLP Reflec­tor 9219.

Addi­tional details about SKYWARN Recog­ni­tion Day are avail­able on the SKYWARN Recog­ni­tion Day web page.

W8VY Repeater Downtown Link Once Again Up and Running!

As of approx­i­mately 2:20 PM this after­noon, Thurs­day Novem­ber 20th,  the W8VY Repeater Down­town Link is once again on the air! The new link equip­ment was oper­a­tional for a few days some weeks ago, but needed some addi­tional adjust­ments, so was removed for fur­ther maintenance.

Try it out! 147.00 minus off­set and a CTCSS (PL) of 127.3hz

Thank you again to every­one involved in this project.

W8VY Repeater Downtown Link is Back!!

As of approx­i­mately 2 PM this after­noon, the W8VY Repeater Down­town Link is back on the air! The link was taken off the air months ago due to the demo­li­tion of the build­ing under it on the cam­pus of West­ern Michi­gan Uni­ver­sity, leav­ing a hole in cov­er­age for lower power trans­mit­ters any­where in the down­town val­ley area.

Another loca­tion was arranged, new equip­ment was pur­chased and installed, with the final piece of equip­ment (antenna) brought online this afternoon.

Thanks to Art Snap­per — NK8X, James “JeRB” Buchanan — K8WPI, Ron Schubot — N8CML, John Math­ieson — AC8JW, and Jack Price — KA8AOB for their com­bined con­tri­bu­tions in time, mate­ri­als and/or labor. (This list isn’t nec­es­sar­ily all-inclusive. Updates will be made as necessary!)

Try it out! 147.00 minus off­set and a CTCSS (PL) of 127.3hz

Thank you to every­one involved in this project.


UPDATE 10÷19÷14: The new down­town link is tem­porar­ily out of ser­vice from Octo­ber 19th until fur­ther notice, due to the need for some final main­te­nance and read­just­ment before being per­ma­nently returned to ser­vice!