FCC fees for amateur radio - updates on implementation

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by N2RJ, Jul 9, 2021.

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  1. KI7WL

    KI7WL Ham Member QRZ Page

    Keep in mind that the people paying the lion share are commercial users who are making money with the radio spectrum. We are not commercial users. Some of us are even seniors living on Social Security I hear...
  2. N2EY

    N2EY XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Laura Smith. I don't know what she is paid, but remember it's not just her pay but benefits, taxes, etc. $150,000 for an attorney in DC is probably quite low.

    OK, but that's probably low, because, since it's a government database, there's almost certainly all sorts of security and backups, as well as backups to the backups....

    There's also the cost of office space, supplies, etc. And I'm pretty sure Laura Smith isn't the only one who works on amateur radio licenses; she's enforcement.

    Let's do the math....

    Start with your 50,000 number, for new licenses and upgrades. There are about 780,000 amateur licenses total, so add about 70,000 renewals per year. Now we're at 120,000, which at $35 each results in total revenue of $4.2 million.

    That sounds like a lot, but processing 120,000 applications per year is about 500 per day.

    Note too that there is no fee for address changes, so the actual number of interactions is higher.

    But unless we know what the actual costs are, we can't really say we're overpaying. Plus there's the cost of processing the fees.

    Here's the irony:

    For many years, FCC charged fees for vanity callsigns. Then they examined their system and realized that the cost of collecting the money was pretty close to the money they collected - that they weren't really netting anything significant. So they dropped the vanity call fee.

    Now we have fees again - I suspect that big chunk of the fee goes to paying the costs of collecting the fees.

    Because Congress forced it on them.

    Don't blame FCC. There was a bill that passed Congress some time back that REQUIRES FCC to charge a fee for ALL licenses. Never mind what FCC wanted to do, never mind the added work and costs, never mind that Amateur Radio is not a moneymaking radio service. Congress told them they HAD TO charge fees. Their original figure was $50, but ARRL and some others talked them into $35.

    Sure - but that would mean a higher fee for some to compensate for a lower fee for others.

    Have you seen this?:

  3. KI5QPV

    KI5QPV Ham Member QRZ Page

    I apologize I am new to the hobby and was not sure who that went to. Thank you for clearing that misconception up for me! 73's
    KU4X likes this.
  4. K2CD

    K2CD Premium Subscriber QRZ Page


    Old news, but to me seems to be part of a greater agenda.

    To wit: “Based on our review of the record, we are not persuaded that the petition discloses sufficient grounds for the requested rule change,” the FCC said in a June 21 Order. “Krotz’s primary argument is that extending the term of amateur licenses to the lifetime of the holder would reduce the Commission’s administrative and personnel costs, but it is not clear to us that the proposal actually would enhance administrative efficiency.” That’s because the vast majority of license renewals are submitted online and processed automatically by the Universal Licensing System (ULS), “with minimal staff involvement,” the Order said.

    The FCC said it had further reduced its overhead by no longer routinely mailing out paper licenses. “f license terms were extended to the holder’s lifetime, we likely would receive more cancellations on account of the licensee’s death, which are labor-intensive, because staff must carefully verify the deceased’s identity and licenses in order to guard against erroneous cancellations,” the FCC said in its Order, signed by Wireless Telecommunications Bureau Deputy Mobility Division Chief Scot Stone."
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2021
    N3RYB likes this.
  5. KA2FIR

    KA2FIR Ham Member QRZ Page

    "That's dumb! the last thing we need is the tyranny field office down the block! The HAM radio service needs No FCC to enforce anything! The Dang Government should Butt-Out of the radio Tyranny of empty threats and focus on the military like what there supposed to do !"

    Maybe you should cancel your ticket and go back to practicing freebanding/stealbanding fulltime.

    "Good Luck.":D
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2021
    WN1MB and W3PX like this.

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