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W7CCE Petitons for PRB-1 Modification

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by W7CCE, Jan 29, 2012.

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  1. W7CCE

    W7CCE Ham Member QRZ Page

    View attachment PetitonToFCCRePRB1byW7CCE.pdf

    The attached file is a Petition to expand the application of PRB-1. It is based on an Equal Rights claim. To establish the claim it is necessary to establish that certain classes of amateurs are/were in identical situations with regard to those who received relief from PRB-1 but were not equally treated by the regulation.

    Petitioner states that they "move elsewhere" philosophy of PRB-1 fails to address classes of amateurs born into restrictive areas and those who had/have no part in selecting where they would reside.

    Because over 66% of Americans now rent, and HOA market penetration has skyrocked, while the urban population has increased to 75% of Americans, the Petitioner suggests it is finally time for the FCC to act by extending PRB-1 in its present form to private contracts.

    Petitioner also asks that special exemptions be applied to wire antennas so that simple rules exist in that domain, allowing for easier participation by youth and those who otherwise might be confused by complex regulation and court decisions. Petitioner also asks that SWL and the commercial shortwave market be considered.

    Petitioner asks that no significant changes be made which would compromise existing District Court decisions which upheld PRB-1 application.


    Leonard J. Umina, W7CCE (Petitioner)
    Formerly WT6G, K1LU, N1LU, WA1IOB, WN1IOB, J6LIY, and A35LU
  2. KT1F

    KT1F Ham Member QRZ Page

    I haven't read it all yet but it looks good.

    I've said this kind of jokingly before but it might be useful to study how the "Right to Dry" movement has approached pretty much the same problem. They have succeeded in getting laws passed in some states. I don't know if they've attempted anything at the federal level.

    Thanks for your efforts. It doesn't affect me in my current situation but, who knows, it might in future.

    Whenever we're talking about this to someone I think it's important to stress that all we're asking for is the unrestricted right to string a wire safely in the air. We're not talking about big ugly scary towers which is probably what a lot of people think of when they hear "ham radio antennas".

    Yes, we've all heard the arguments saying "don't sign a contract that you can't agree to..." etc but... life is just not that simple.
  3. WA9SVD

    WA9SVD Ham Member QRZ Page

    While I would welcome some "relief," I doubt this effort will succeed. It sets a very bad precedent and an even slipperier slope if the Federal Government (in this case, the FCC) tries to circumvent or invalidate private contracts, the conditions to which individuals freely agree(d,) whether they like it or realize it or not, by not reading ALL "fine print." While many (if not most) HOA conditions are silly or even outrageous, when a homeowner signs a contract, they HAVE agreed to abide by all the conditions and rules. They MAY be able to work out a compromise (or circumvent the rules with stealth antennas, etc.) but if they DID sign a contract, that is legally binding. Once they move in, they either have to live by the conditions, find a loophole, or have the rules changed.
    The last thing we need is the Federal Government getting even more involved in our private or personal lives, and that includes where we call "home." YMMV.
  4. W6OGC

    W6OGC Ham Member QRZ Page

    The pervasiveness of antenna restrictions has been a growing problem for decades, and threatens to end amateur radio.

    I recall being at a Boy Scout District Jamboree here, probably 30 years ago now, manning the radio station when I noticed a uniformed youngster eyeing the rig and goings on with intense interest. I went over to him to ask if he had ever seen a ham radio station. He says he is KB6xxx!

    "No fooling! Good for you! What kind of rig do you have?"

    " Ahhh, just a bunch of old junk!"

    "Like what?"

    "Ahh, a Viking Ranger and a NC-303."

    "Are you kidding me? I'd have killed somebody for a Ranger and a NC-303 when I was your age! What do you use for an antenna?"

    "I put a wire in the attic. We can't have outside antennas where I live.":(

    I spent some years as a Volunteer Counsel for the ARRL, and the biggest job is going around trying to get amateurs relief from oppressive HOA and zoning restrictions. For the most part these are irrational in their scope and sweep. Here, there is reason to believe that the restrictions are more or less mandated on the sly by local governing bodies (city council/ board of supervisors who approve subdivision maps) to encourage use of cable, a revenue enhancing stance, in effect zoning required by contract, to avoid the scope of PRB-1.

    For decades, the government refused to negate race restrictions in CC&Rs, on the same grounds, private contract. Finally, it became acceptable to interfere with these theretofore sacrosanct contracts on Constitutional grounds. Here the activity interfered with is not only lawful but licensed by the government.

    HOA restrictions come in many forms. Some are absolute prohibitions, of antennas. If you string a wire for some other plausible purpose, it is presumably OK. Some take the form of height restrictions so onerous that shortwave efficacy is virtually nil. Some allow antennas but only if "screened from public view" as if the sight of the offending appartus will strike terror or loathing or both in any unfortunate member of the public who happens by.

    I doubt the FCC will act on this seriously. Perhaps this is the stage setting for taking it to a District Court to press Constitutional grounds, and this is an essential step in that process.

    We amateurs have been far too passive on the political front, or maybe impotent, I'm not sure which.

    It's past time for relief, and I hope you are successful in what will be a long hard fight with an unfortunately short stick.
  5. KJ4BIX

    KJ4BIX Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    It seems some people are failing to realize that you might not have been a HAM when you "signed the contract". Many of us bought a house well in advance of becoming a HAM, now you can't really peruse the hobby in the same manner, in fact by having antenna restrictions you tend to cause more interference than if you could have a legitimate antenna. So we are forced to sell and move, without PRB-1 you would need to sell and move to have a satellite antenna (I know a little extreme example, but the same application). I would love to have a 100' tower with a StepIR, but in reality I can't, why can't a provision for some sort of antenna be addressed? Even rules like it can’t be visible from the front of the house/street, some provision to make it acceptable instead of "lurking in darkness".
    Almost all new houses are subject to an HOA or restriction; it isn't going away it is only going to get more controlling, so you are restricting number of people that could participate in the hobby. While I agree, the government needs to stay out of personal affairs and get back to protecting our liberty and our right to pursue our own freedoms, is seems something could be done. Try to put solar cells on top of your house and see how your HOA feels about that, so much for freedom. (I know, don't sign the contract, frankly - it isn't an option if you live in or near a city.)

  6. W2TTT

    W2TTT XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    PRB-1 and PRB-3

    I think that PRB-3 protecting tv antennas already opened the door here. Media access via broadcast or wireless seems to be in the tv mix and could be clearly extended to cover Amateur Radio, fixed wireless, swl, fm etc. Remember that PRB-1 preceded PRB-3 and the scope expanded in the latter.

    Vy 73,
    Gordon Beattie, W2TTT
  7. W2MFT

    W2MFT Ham Member QRZ Page

    What I can't believe is that some hams would not support something to help fellow Hams...Something missed in the fine print...Let us hope someday it isn't you asking for help! Shame on you!

  8. G4LHT

    G4LHT Ham Member QRZ Page

    With 632000 Hams in the USA, I thought you would have formed some sort of lobby group to have your concerns represented in the various different levels of political houses that exist in your Republic.

  9. NA0AA

    NA0AA Ham Member QRZ Page

    It might be better to approach it as a First Amendment issue - the right to free speech. They have said that corporations have it, that PAC's have it, even loonies have it.

    After all, Cell Phone users are a protected class - don't believe me? Why is the ONLY FEDERAL law prohibiting receiving radio waves the one against listening to cell phone calls. Why are cell phone jammers illegal? Let's argue freedom of speech and defy them to stop us!

    Personally, so far I've put up every antenna I want without anyone saying anything, but too many amateurs have restrictions even on wire antennas - and let's face it you have to work HARD to make a really visible wire antenna - Telerana, Spider, Hexxbeam come to mind.

    Anyway, I'm all for it. Too many HOA restriction in first place, and this one is worst of all.
  10. AA7EJ

    AA7EJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Unless I am mistaken, most objections to anything HOA and other restrictions by anybody else are based on esthetics.

    In the eyes of the relator and tax assessor - the “value” of my neighbor house is based on my “ugly” ham radio antenna and not on his barking mutt at 5 AM. Absurd.

    Nothing to do with freedom of anything, it is all about being tolerant.

    The society is failing miserably in that and no law will change that.
    My opinion is that “Declaration of Independence “ with its “all men are created equal “ needs to be accepted as law of this land.

    I support this petition, but question “being born into “ restrictive environment as “gee look at me, I am innocent bystander here”.

    I still maintain that access to federally controlled resource and still considered as valuable for emergency communication (by federalis!) would have a better change to be taken seriously by FCC.

    Of course if FCC collected a token fee for each antenna that may put ham radio on equal footing with those super ugly but making money cell antennas. HI HI HI

    Personally - there is nothing more beautiful that 3 elements 20 meters cubical quad!
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