Welcome to Handiham World.
Picture: The IC-7200 is tuned to 3.925 MHz, which is possible because I have a 75 meter antenna in my yard. There are plenty of ham radio operators out there who are told, "No antennas for you!"
ARRL asks us to write a letter. I think we should.
By Patrick Tice, WA0TDA
One of the problems with summer is that everyone has a summer schedule that includes time doing summer stuff. It might be away from the office, vacationing away from home, taking a break from being constantly connected via email and phone, and yes, putting ham radio activities on the shelf until autumn rolls around. I guess that most of us might think of this as a good thing - everyone needs time away from the usual routine.
But there is a problem. Sometimes critical, time-sensitive things come up, even during summer and vacation. It is easy to miss news about what it going on in ham radio during the summer, and unfortunately for a lot of us that is exactly what has happened with a very, very important piece of Amateur Radio related legislation in the United States House of Representatives, HR. 4969.
HR. 4969 has been in the ham radio news for much of the summer, but most of us have been in "summer mode" and have pretty much ignored it. But now - TODAY - is the time for you to act in support of The Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2014, which is what HR. 4969 is all about. The ARRL website states that "it is crunch time" and that the letters in support of this bill MUST be at the ARRL for delivery to Congress no later than September 12 - and that's THIS FRIDAY!
"Constituent letters urging members of the US House of Representatives to co-sponsor H.R. 4969, the Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2014, need to arrive at ARRL Headquarters by Friday, September 12, for forwarding to Congress. ARRL Regulatory Information Manager Dan Henderson, N1ND, said the last legislative day for the fall is September 19, and Congress will not be back in session again until after the mid-term election."
Okay, I'll admit that I've been too busy to take care of this simple task until today, but I did get my letter to my Congressional Representative written and emailed to ARRL headquarters, where it will be delivered to Congress en masse to show our support for our being able to set up antennas more freely, which is what this is all about.
It's easy to do. Just go to the following ARRL page:
Once you are there, read the concise summary of what this is all about, and if you agree that accommodating ham radio antennas is important, go to the HR. 4969 sample letter that ARRL has set up at the bookmark labeled "How can I help to get HR 4969 passed?" You will find a sample letter and a link to your Congressional Representative. Please note that you only need to make up the letter that includes your name and address, make sure it is addressed to your representative, sign it, and either FAX or email it to ARRL. To find your representative, look for the bookmark link "Who is my Congressperson?" and to find out how and where to send it, look for the bookmark link "Where should I send my letter to my Congressperson?" All of these bookmarks are on the page http://www.arrl.org/hr-4969.
Making up my own letter took all of five minutes. I opened a letterhead document I already had for writing letters, found the sample letter on the ARRL website, then located my representative's name and address, which I also pasted in. I had a scanned signature to insert at the end, and then I saved it and sent it to ARRL as a file attachment:
"If you wish to write and sign your letter then send the signed copy to the ARRL as an attachment (PDF or scan) to an email, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org with the words 'HR 4969 letter' in the SUBJECT field of the email."
Be sure the letter is SIGNED! That means that you may have to print and sign it, then scan it and send it as an attachment if you don't have a pre-scanned signature as I did to paste in.
Take a few minutes to do this right now, today. Remember that it must be at ARRL by this Friday, September 12, 2014.
One of my favorite nets is the 75 meter PICONET. I hate to think how much I'd miss getting on that net if I had to put up with antenna restrictions. Act now!
(For Handiham World, this is Pat Tice, WA0TDA.)