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Repeater Use and Restrictions

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by KI7LFD, Jan 9, 2020.

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  1. KI7LFD

    KI7LFD Ham Member QRZ Page

    Recently, I became aware of some questionable restriction of usage of a local repeater network. Specifically that it has prohibited use of the network by local "preppers" and religious organizations. Typically, this inhibits these local organizations from discussing on these selected repeaters, matters related to their organizations. … such as "prepper" related conferences, "prepper" equipment, food storage, emergency planning, etc. In the case of religious groups, it prohibits religious groups from discussing church related socials, retreats, regional conferences, etc.

    These selected organizations are prohibited from scheduling structured managed networks related to their interests.

    My question is this: Is this set of restrictions permissible ? (Either by the ARRL or FCC)

    I realize this is a odd question, but I'm not aware of any legal ruling that allows such restriction of the airways.

    I can understand restricting use of a repeater network, if there are issues of abuse, but this does not appear to be the case, at this point in time.

    Thanks in advance for the replies.

  2. W1VT

    W1VT Ham Member QRZ Page

    97.205 (e)
    Limiting the use of a repeater to only certain user stations is permissible.
    N0TZU, K0UO and N2EY like this.
  3. K9STH

    K9STH Ham Member QRZ Page

    Perfectly legal!

    Since the repeater is privately owned, the owner can restrict those who utilize the repeater for any reason. The solution is for the restricted group to establish their own repeater (if there are frequencies available). In many areas, there are no 2-meter repeater pairs available. However, in very few areas are there no 70 cm frequencies available.

    Since most of preppers, etc., are using Baofeng, or other Chinese manufactured, units, almost all of such radios do have 70 cm capabilities. There are a number of "turnkey" repeater systems available at reasonable prices. If several of the group were to "pool" the cost, each individual's share would be fairly low. The only major thing is to acquire a suitable location for the repeater.

    Glen, K9STH
    KK4NSF, N4DJT, K2NCC and 2 others like this.
  4. KA9JLM

    KA9JLM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Enforcement is another issue. :eek:

    A repeater owner does not own the frequency.
  5. KA0HCP

    KA0HCP XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Yes it is another issue. However the FCC has supported repeater owners banning of specific users, in letters to the bannees.

    And then there is the issue of being jerk by using the repeater frequencies simplex to annoy the repeater owner and users.
    K0UO likes this.
  6. KA0HCP

    KA0HCP XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Amateur radio is, by international treaty, for purely personal reasons. It is not to be used by organizations to conduct their normal activities. The regs specifically state that amateur radio should not be used for other purposes that are more appropriately conducted on other services, e.g. Telephone, Cell phone, CB, FRS, GMRS, etc.
    AG5DB likes this.
  7. AG6QR

    AG6QR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    "Your repeater, your rules"

    Google that phrase, and you'll see plenty of cites showing the FCC's policy of backing up repeater owners who want to set arbitrary restrictions on repeater use, when those restrictions go beyond what the FCC requires.

    I could require that every conversation on my repeater be held entirely in Pig-Latin, and as long as I allowed users to state their call sign in English as required by Part 97, the FCC would back me up on banning users who refused to comply with my petty rules.

    I could, but I won't. First, because I don't own a repeater, and second, because such a policy would be upidstay.
    N1VAU, K0UO and N2EY like this.
  8. W4EAE

    W4EAE XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    There are amateur radio based clubs of all sorts; Preppers, RVers, American Legion posts. By this strict reasoning, they would not be allowed to have nets or even conversations about their clubs on the air.
    K7JEM likes this.
  9. KW0FRE

    KW0FRE Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    That's a rather inflated view of the ARRL's "authority".
    KD8OSD, ND6M and AI7PM like this.
  10. KA0HCP

    KA0HCP XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Conversations? No. Conducting organization business; That's prohibited, as I previously stated.

    It is well known that a certain church has incorporated amateur radio into its' emergency planning, and that church activities probably spill over onto ham radio regularly.

    Using ham radio to immediately safeguard life and property is authorized.

    Planning to use amateur radio as the organization's method of communications and/or there is no immediate threat to life and property when other services are available and more appropriate is not permissible. The church could obtain business licenses and commercial radios, or use CB, FRS, GMRS etc.
    AG5DB and K0UO like this.

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