FCC proposes new filing fee structure, new fees for ham radio

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by KU3N, Aug 27, 2020.

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  1. KJ4AUQ

    KJ4AUQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Charge fees that will drive folks away and reduce the number of hams to a level that will allow frequencies to be auctioned off. It's all about the money. Specially in the 70cm and 2m bands. Normally, Money charged by government agencies goes into the general fund and is not retained by the federal agency. This keeps agencies from padding their budgets and giving themselves big bonuses. These folks have decided that armature radio is no longer needed and should be gotten rid of. How many technicians will be willing to shell out $50 to talk on repeaters when they can use their cellphones? It will last another 10 or 15 years, but we are being programmed for elimination.
     
    N6ATF likes this.
  2. WA1NTI

    WA1NTI Ham Member QRZ Page

    Remember had to go to the FCC office to take my General exam.
     
  3. KB8NXO

    KB8NXO Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Thank you for your nail in the coffin. I looked it up and you have it smack bang. Almost makes one wonder why they tried to breadk the law. - Peace out -
     
  4. KG7WBW

    KG7WBW Ham Member QRZ Page

    The FCC should not raise the amateur radio application fee from $15 to $50. On page 9 of the FCC 20-116 it states that “personal licenses are mostly automated and do not have individualized staff costs for data input or review (pg. 9)”. Since the ULS is mostly automated, what reason is there to justify a 233% price increase for ham radio applications? The budget of the FCC has grown consistently since 1993 which only adds to the confusion as to why this price increase is required. I personally feel this is nothing more than a money grab by the FCC.

    Amateur radio provides a valuable service to the public. Radio plays a key role in disaster recovery efforts for every major disaster in the United States and around the world. This service is provided by volunteer radio operators who have spent years studying and training for such events. The increase from $15 to $50 will make it more expensive for new people to enter an already expensive hobby. We need more radio operators, not fewer. I strongly encourage the FCC to reconsider this fee proposal. Thank you for taking the time to read my public comment.
     
    KJ4BFH likes this.
  5. KU4X

    KU4X Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Currently there is no application fee for an amateur radio license. The $15 fee you are referring to is the maximum fee that a VE team may charge to cover expenses of administrating a license test. If an application fee is adopted it will be separate and distinct from the fee collected by a VE team.


    Regards,
    -Bruce
     
  6. KG7WBW

    KG7WBW Ham Member QRZ Page

    You're right, thank you for that clarification. Hopefully it remains $0 fee from the FCC. If this eventually becomes law, this won't be good for the hobby.
     
    N6ATF likes this.
  7. KU4X

    KU4X Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Shame on me for relying on my memory and not checking for current info. 47 CFR Part 97 Section 527 does not state a maximum fee:

    §97.527 Reimbursement for expenses.
    VEs and VECs may be reimbursed by examinees for out-of-pocket expenses incurred in preparing, processing, administering, or coordinating an examination for an amateur operator license.

    https://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-i...b908a535&mc=true&node=se47.5.97_1527&rgn=div8


    Regards,
    -Bruce
     
    N6ATF likes this.
  8. KG7WBW

    KG7WBW Ham Member QRZ Page

    The biggest issue is that the FCC has a $300+ million budget. The FCC ULS is mostly automated. Where is this proposed $50 going? It can't possibly be used to cover staff time. Indeed, the FCC 20-270 admits as much on page 9 of the document. So basically this is just a money grab. If we're paying $50, there needs to be tangible benefits to radio operators. $50 a year should lead to better enforcement, a paper license, and some kind of guarantee the amateur spectrum won't be eaten away by commercial interests.
     
  9. KG7WBW

    KG7WBW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Radio waves existed long before the FCC was invented. The FCC does not create nor maintain the airwaves. This $50 fee gets us nothing in return from what I can tell. It is akin to paying for public park maintenance that has neither grass nor playground, just a bunch of crushed gravel.

    It's the principal. The FCC has a $300+ million budget every single year - it sounds like they need to do a better job budgeting like the rest of the world. The FCC admits that the ULS is "mostly automated". If so, what is the purpose of this proposed $50 fee?

    Of course it doesn't cost that much. The FCC is bloated. There is no excuse to charge $50 to process an application when the FCC itself admits (pg. 9 20-270) that the ULS is "mostly automated".
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2020
    N6ATF likes this.

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