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Thread: FCC Seeks Higher Vanity Call Fee

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  1. #11


    Quote Originally Posted by NA7U View Post
    80 cents more?? Is that all, or is there a typo above? I'd say they should double it and put it towards enforcement of FCC regulations on the bands. We miss you Riley Hollingsworth!
    No matter WHAT the fee, irt goes into the Treasury. The ONLY way (unfortunately) to get any fees or additional funds directled to the FCC is through Congress, and even then, wouldn't be directed for enforcement matters.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
    Magnolia Ms ! very QUIET here ! I LOVE it !

    Default Give us a BREAK !

    Quote Originally Posted by KJ4VTH View Post
    The FCC released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking looking to raise the fee for Amateur Radio vanity call signs. Currently a vanity call sign costs $14.20 and is good for 10 years. The new fee, if approved, will be $15 for 10 years. The FCC is authorized by the Communications Act of 1934 to collect vanity call sign fees to recover the costs associated with that program.
    1ST OFF ! to the Fellow that is complaining,........ I paid $ 50.00 for MINE so stop CRYING !
    to the FCC : PLEASE,......... PICK a PRICE and stick with it ! this Yo Yo stuff is for the BIRDS !

    J.M.O. 73 Joey

  3. #13
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Gillette Wyo


    I got my vanity call in 2008... so I don't know the answer, but is there the extra fee Every time a vanity call ham renews, or just the initial time?

    I am not really belly aching about the increase, but I can't see having to pay it once my call and information is in the system. About like a vanity license plate... I pay the one time fee to get it set up, after that, it's standard city, state, county fees.

  4. #14


    It's a cost recovery fee. The FCC gets to recover the cost of running the vanity callsign system and that's all. Yes, the process is automated, but the computers and the people to run them do cost money. Since the FCC is allowed only to recover its cost, it has to recalculate that cost every year. Fred Maia wrote a really good article in QST within the last year or so explaining how it works. One way to think about it is that at $15 for a license that's good for 10 years, whether for the initial application or a renewal, it costs the FCC $1.50 a year to maintain your information in its vanity callsign database. Seems like a pretty good deal to me.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
    Austin, TX


    Still cheaper than most other countries and a lot less than most other hobbies ( depending on your station ).
    SKCC #5582 FISTS #14454 NAQCC 4028

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Hillsborough, NC


    This is no place for political rants.

    The vanity fee should be at least doubled.
    I wouldn't mind if there were a fee for all licenses.


  7. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    in a seaside village


    Would many hams pay a one time fee for their vanity call? In Canada, the vanity fee is a one-time payment of $60 CDN. Why not a $60 -- $80 one time fee option for new applicants, and an optional prorated lump-sum payment for current vanity licenseholders?

    I suspect that most hams would never agree on a "fair" pro-rata. For this reason ham opposition to this measure would likely be widespread. We're probably stuck with ten-year renewal fees. Still, I would pay a prorated lifetime fee if the pro rata was reasonably pegged to future costs.

    73, Jordan

  8. #18


    The problem that I see with these imposed fees is that everyone agrees with them as long as they personally can afford it.

    Sure, 80 cents is no big deal to most so we can say "go ahead and tack it on, heck make it $30", however would so many be agreeable if instead it was that much per year? Instead of arguing what amount, it really needs to be looked at to see if this fee actually goes to administering the license program and not to make up some other shortfall somewhere else, or sponsor some quarter million dollar conference somewhere.

    I just pulled some numbers from N4MC's website, which states there are 751,051 licensed amateur callsigns and that 12.31% are vanity calls. so that means that approximately 92,451 amateurs have vanity calls. At the current price rate that equals a little over $131,200 per year.

    Just for administering this program, which has not much to do with the actual licensing, just granting and maintaining a different callsign. Now granted the first group got in for less so this is not 100% accurate, but if this system is not economically feasible at the current price maybe it should be altered so that it is, just like any private business would have to do.

    To put it in a different light, lets do a crude division of the numbers and say that every year 9,245 vanity licenses expire. That means that every month 771 vanity licenses need renewal, which if we figure 20 working days in a month (oops, this is a gov't job so lets say 17 working days) so then we get a rough estimate of 45 renewals per day. I think a budget of close to $11,000 a month can handle this. I know it sure could in the business world.

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Edison, New Jersey, USA FN20so


    The extra small fee doesn't bother me one bit. Nobody forced me to choose a new call or give up my old one. I could have opted for the next available call for my area and license class, but I chose to go the vanity call route.

    Sure, I'd like it to have been a one-time fee, but compared to the cost of radios, coax, etc., it's pretty reasonable. For comparison, many states charge an annual fee of at least $20 for a vanity license plate for your car, and in some states that includes Ham Radio plates! In NJ, though, there is thankfully a one-time fee for vanity ($50) or Ham ($15) plates.

    Icom IC-746Pro
    Yaesu FT-530
    Yaesu FT-8100R
    Icom IC-F121
    Alinco 220 HT

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Maricopa, Arizona


    Why do they even bother with 80-cent increases? As someone said, it probably cost more to administer and collect than the revenue will bring in.

    I don't have a problem paying more for my license as long as I get some benefit over and above what I am getting now. Otherwise, it's just a tax increase.

    Finally, I don't think the lack of enforcement is a matter of insufficient funding. It's a matter of lack of will on the part of the FCC. The egregious violations that have taken place by very few people have persisted for years. Volunteers and concerned passerby have submitted logs, tapes, and other evidence to no avail. Even though the individuals are small in number, if this malicious nonsense is allowed to continue without consequence, it will expand.

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