Open Roads Radio forum for Ham, Amateur Radio and RV camping


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 06-11-2014, 04:47 PM   #1
electricflyer
Senior Member
 
electricflyer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Douglasville, GA
Posts: 417
Default New rules coming from the FCC

If you are a member of ARRL you will have already received the email about FCC rules changes.
For those that are not ARRL members here is the short side of the message.

Hams that were General or Extra license holders and let them expire there will be an opportunity to regain the license even after the 2 year grant period has expired. There was no mention of Advanced license holders so I don't know how this would affect them. Since the explanation was general and not in depth as to how the mechanics of it will be administered I will wait to see what the ARRL, W5YI and Cavec will handle it.

The only stipulation to the reinstatement of a license will be that they will have to take and pass the Tech License exam before it is granted. Since the individual VE's will not have access to the database of expired licenses at a test session it will be up to the FCC to determine if the license will be reinstated.

A couple rule requests that failed were: Reduce the minimum number of VE's at a test session from 3 to 2. I was glad to see that failed. The other had to do with remote test sessions which involved places where the distance to take an exam was a hindrance as would be possible in Alaska or other less inhabited areas.

As for past expired licenses, I was not in favor of that mainly because I think that if a license holder didn't renew even after a 2 year grace period that would indicate to me that the license holder was no longer interested in the hobby. I think that changes of technology in radio communications warrant someone who is not active to be recertified but I guess that wasn't a consideration.

It may help some people like one that we tested at the hamfest last Saturday who had held a General license and let it expire. He did take the Tech license exam and passed so I guess when the rule takes effect he can request reinstatement of his past license. I have also tested at least one person that had held an Extra license and let it expire but has since got it back after retesting.

The new ruling will take affect 30 days after publication in the Federal Register which will probably be some time this week.
Marv
KT4W
electricflyer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-2014, 05:58 PM   #2
NN5I
Carl, nn5i
 
NN5I's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Posts: 1,407
Default

I can clear some of that up.

(1) The change is that a VE can grant upgrade credit for any element required for a license previously issued, no matter when. That is, the expired license itself serves as a CSCE for all higher-than-tech elements that were required for its original issue.

(2) It does not apply for expired VE-issued CSCEs when no license or upgrade was issued.

(3) It apparently applies only for license upgrades. Thus, if for example you are an expired Extra, you've got to get a Tech license or higher by examination; then you can upgrade to Extra at a subsequent VE session without any more testing, but only after the new Tech is issued. But this is still unclear; it may be that VEs can certify former licensees for General or Extra without waiting for a new Tech issuance.

(4) Advanced licenses are no longer issued. Former Advanced licensees can upgrade as far as General without additional testing, after first obtaining a new Tech.

Me, I approve. I also would approve totally automatic reinstatement merely by application. Actually I think ham licenses ought to be lifetime licenses just like my First Phone; the only drawback I see is that there would need to be a way for FCC to know when the licensee dies, so his callsign could be reused.
__________________
-- Carl
NN5I is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-2014, 08:08 PM   #3
Radio
Administrator
 
Radio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Fayetteville, GA, USA
Posts: 3,004
Default

Last time I was up for renewal I got junk mail offering to renew my license for me, for a fee. With all that junk mail, how could you over look it?

Now that finances have begun to slowly turn around I need to get back in the ARRL, if only for the magazine.
__________________

KU4OJ "Wade" Ships Captain, CFO, Chief Engineer
KG4DQQ "Kathy" 1st Officer, Navigator, Best Friend
2007 F-150 SuperCab - 2009 Rockwood 8280SS
Lot's of mostly Kenwood stuff

Radio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-2014, 08:31 PM   #4
electricflyer
Senior Member
 
electricflyer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Douglasville, GA
Posts: 417
Default

Carl, I agree, the answer should be a non-expiring license which I have no problem with, and perhaps that will be the next step. The issue here is to reinstate those that had licenses in the past and want to renew now. As for the CSCE's expiring after 1 year, I don't know why a license would not have been issued within a year after an exam.
Since VE's don't issue a license it is up to the FCC to determine the eligibility of a past license. All we have to do is conduct the exam.

As far as determining when deaths occur for a non-expiring license that might be a problem as a high percentage of deaths are not reported to the FCC now. I know of one instance where the ham was on his death bed and his wife renewed his license for him, I guess hoping he would recover. But, his death has never been reported. I contacted his sister and told her to send the information of his death but that has never happened. I don't have the documents to do it or I would have reported it, but as it is, his license will expire in about 10 years counting the 2 year grace period.
electricflyer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-2014, 08:54 PM   #5
electricflyer
Senior Member
 
electricflyer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Douglasville, GA
Posts: 417
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Radio View Post
Last time I was up for renewal I got junk mail offering to renew my license for me, for a fee. With all that junk mail, how could you over look it?

Now that finances have begun to slowly turn around I need to get back in the ARRL, if only for the magazine.
I think a number of old hams aren't familiar with the FCC website and think that someone has to renew their license for them and this is the way it is done. I had to tell my son and also my brother-in-law how to do it on-line. Brother-in-law said "that was slick", and he has had his license for over 40 years.

As for ARRL membership, Radio, I belong to the organization from the legal aspect. The lobbying for frequencies, legal help with antenna issues, and a number of other benefits. The magazine is just another benefit. Don't misunderstand, I not flaming you for not being a member of ARRL, just wanted you to look at it for something other than the magazine. I know times can be tough and in this economy you cut expenses where you can.

Hams don't have to be a ARRL member to get on the air so no real need to have it. I guess I just feel I have an obligation to the organization that represents us to the government. The cost is minimal with respect to all the other things we spend money on. I also belong to a national association for Miniature Aircraft Modelers, AMA (Academy of Model Aeronautics) and to participate in that hobby it is a necessity to be able to fly RC aircraft since liability insurance is needed to fly in any public space and the Academy provides a umbrella insurance policy for that. That membership cost $20 more than ARRL and I've belonged to it for over 50 years.
electricflyer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-2014, 09:02 PM   #6
NN5I
Carl, nn5i
 
NN5I's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Posts: 1,407
Default

There could be many reasons a person would fail to renew. I am an example. After being a Novice (KN4SCK) in 1957 and a Tech (K4SCK) in 1958, I failed to renew in 1963 because at that time you had to have been active to renew; had to state it on the Form 610. I hadn't been active for a couple years because I was an engineering student, totally broke, with no equipment. So eventually I had to start over. Got a new Tech (N5DRU) in 1980, Advanced (KD5BH) in 1981, and Extra in 1982. I was, I think, the very last person to pass the Extra at the Dallas FCC office. That's when the FCC stopped giving exams at FCC offices. I was a VE at what I believe to have been the second-ever VE exam session in the US, in Dallas a few months later. It was about a year and a half after that, that the ARRL VEC finally got into gear; meanwhile, the DeVry ARC became the first certified VEC, and W5YI was second, followed by Dallas ARC; I was one of DeVry's VEs and later became an ARRL VE. DeVry VEC shut down after ARRL finally got its act in gear; so did Dallas ARC VEC; but they filled the long gap when it was necessary. W5YI VEC is still active, though W5YI himself is no longer around. Fred was quite a character. On Thursday evenings at 8:00 Fred read his W5YI Report on the (Dallas) Metro Information Net, of which I was the Net Control for 18 straight months. It was a big net; only those with business for the net checked in -- there was no roll call, and those just listening didn't check in. I usually had at least 80 checkins for the net, some with announcements but most offering swap-meet items (which had to be ham radio related); sometimes 100 or more. One memorable night I had 120+ -- that was a long net. Among the things I learned along the way was that when net control is transmitting, nothing is getting done. I learned to be terse. Maybe I should recall that right now.

Enough reminiscing -- back to the subject at hand.

Some people, like me, couldn't meet the activity requirement (which no longer exists). Some, perhaps, were out of the country when it came time to renew. Maybe some were sick. Maybe some had a temporary lapse of interest. But all had shown interest, ability, and a certain amount of knowledge. If A could renew without re-proving he knew stuff, why shouldn't B be able to reapply without re-proving it? To me it makes no sense.

Besides, anyone who passed the General decades ago had to show much more competence than it takes for Extra today. How many of today's Extra-Light licensees can even read and understand a schematic, let alone draw one from scratch and explain how it works? It's been dumbed down, diluted, watered down, and most applicants nowadays merely rote-memorize answers whose meaning is as foreign to them as the Ancient Etruscan language is to the average purebred Cocker Spaniel.

*** Added later ***

I ought to add that it's not that I think there's anything wrong with our new applicants. I think nearly all are assets to the hobby, especially by comparison to many old hams of my generation. But the testing method (published question pools and multiple-guess testing) encourages people not to learn the principles. Some will eventually learn, but if they were really going to be tested in a meaningful way, they'd start learning sooner. Many never start learning at all.
__________________
-- Carl
NN5I is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2014, 11:05 AM   #7
wa8yxm
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Mobile, on the road
Posts: 1,139
Send a message via AIM to wa8yxm Send a message via Yahoo to wa8yxm Send a message via Skype™ to wa8yxm
Default

Well, so long as my ARRL membership is current, when it comes time for renewal the ARRL will send me a link to the FCC Universal License System web page come renewal time...

Of course this is a bit like my @arrl.net E-mail address... one ham mentioned that if you are a bit late sending in your dues payment they cut you off (I would not know) I replied I have not sent in a dues payment since 1975 (Check I think it is the JULY (or June) issue for that year, minutes of the board, and you will find out why) When my dues next come due not only will the payment be late,,,,, but so will I (As in The Late WA8YXM).

I get a chuckle out of those pay us to fill in the web page for you sites. But am saddened by the fact that some folks .. Bite.

Only once have I ever gone into the "Grace period" and that was only a short time.. Of course I renewed in the office at Gettysburg that year. Saved a postage stamp and toured the historic battlefield all in the same trip.
wa8yxm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2014, 01:32 PM   #8
NN5I
Carl, nn5i
 
NN5I's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Posts: 1,407
Default

Yes, the convenience of a permanent lifelong e-mail address is one of my reasons for being a life member too -- especially when added to the convenience of not having to send a check every year. But I still have about six years to go before I reach break-even on the cost. Wonder whether or not I'll make it.

Back when I was a member of the work force -- seems so long ago -- I bought life memberships in just about everything I was a member of, because I figured I'd be a lot broker after I retired. Boy, was I ever right.
__________________
-- Carl
NN5I is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-13-2014, 10:26 AM   #9
wa8yxm
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Mobile, on the road
Posts: 1,139
Send a message via AIM to wa8yxm Send a message via Yahoo to wa8yxm Send a message via Skype™ to wa8yxm
Default

I broke even on the LIfe long ago..
First: at the time it was kind of like a cort sentence "20 to life" 20 years worth of membership got you LIFE.

Second,, I sent in my check, they cashed it and at the next board meeting took two actions. 1: Increased it to 25 years and 2: Raised the dues.. but I was locked in under the old plan since they had gotten my check.

That was 1974, in 1975 I sent the last check, my Life Membership was approved, so by 1990 (roughly) I'd recovered.. No complaints. Been free-loading ever since.

I even wrote a letter to QST about it once:

From time to time I read letters to the editor that either say:
"Cancel My Subscription" or "Do not renew my membership"

Well these folks have a few problems, I mean "Cancel my subscription" has somewhat missed the boat.. They go on to say that there too much stuff like contest results and such in QST and whatever the current dues rate is "Just too much for just a magazine".. Well it is not just a magazine, part of that is your membership in the ARRL, the #1 origination protecting and working to expand our rights as radio operators. And besides a Playboy subscription is much more expensive and contains very little of interest to the serious electronics experimenter.

Then, on we have the "Cancel/do not renw my membership" types. They are often upset over a decision of the board of directors.. Well. if you do not like what they did, do not quit because if everyone who thinks like you quites you will NEVER like what they did.. Rather stay in, and VOTE in your next director's election for the other guy.. Or better yet, get a few of your friends to sign off on the nomination and BE the other guy.

Finally though, I think I have found the one valid reason for non-renewal of my membership when it expires.. And thus, When my LIFE MEMBERSHIP expires, I'll not be renewing.

Yup, do not know the zip code for that big ham shack in the sky.

(Back then we did not have the ISS, which really is a ham shack in the sky).
wa8yxm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-13-2014, 11:56 AM   #10
Radio
Administrator
 
Radio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Fayetteville, GA, USA
Posts: 3,004
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by wa8yxm View Post
Yup, do not know the zip code for that big ham shack in the sky.

(Back then we did not have the ISS, which really is a ham shack in the sky).
I worked the MIRS. Haven't got the ISS yet.
__________________

KU4OJ "Wade" Ships Captain, CFO, Chief Engineer
KG4DQQ "Kathy" 1st Officer, Navigator, Best Friend
2007 F-150 SuperCab - 2009 Rockwood 8280SS
Lot's of mostly Kenwood stuff

Radio is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:33 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.