What do you see as the role of the FCC?

Discussion in 'Contests, DXpeditions and Special Events' started by W0LC, Aug 20, 2004.

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  1. W0LC

    W0LC Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have been licensed for some time now, less then many and more then others.

    Over the years, I have seen the role of the FCC in regards to Amateur radio continually divest itself and do less and less in regards to Amateur Radio related activities.

    There was a time when the FCC administered exams.
    - That has gone away.

    There was a time when the FCC performed random checks in unmarked vans, monitoring, etc.
    - That has gone away.

    License restructuring was predominantly an FCC function.
    - That has gone away as ARRL has primarily been the driving force on restructuring.

    Enforcement activities in regards to violators.
    - Went away, came back when Riley Hollingsworth came onto the scene and now, mysteriously, don't hear much of Riley anymore and enforcement seems to be waning again. (i.e. K1MAN, enforcement logs are thinner and thinner).

    PRB 1 was a good thing, but the FCC never got behind it and supported it as does the ARRL.
    - The ARRL is carrying the ball and has been for years.

    So just what does the FCC do these days in regards to Amateur Radio one wonders? My thoughts are these:

    Amateur Radio was governed and set up by the FCC years ago as a subset to supporting the military and public service in times of national emergencies. We still perform that role but to a lesser degree I think. With technological changes, the need to "amateurs" is viewed with less criticality as compared to say 40-50 years ago.

    The ARRL is the primary driving force for licensing, restructuring, requesting new allocations, etc. I think the FCC relies on the ARRL to manage the amateur ranks and only serves to inconsistently issue a notice of violation and even then, it seems to lack teeth and empowerment.

    What the FCC really does in my eyes: The FCC is an allocation (frequency) realtor. They sell frequency spectrum and somewhat manage it, loosely. Enforcement of amateur radio bands is largely put back onto the amateur ranks to be "self policing" which means little to nothing. What empowerment does the amateur ranks have to get an abuser off a repeater, confiscate equipment, issue fines, etc. Even the FCC doesn't do much of that unless after months of documentation, recordings, letters, etc., they act on something, and even then, it sometimes is years before they actually act.

    The FCC is in bed with BPL and that is quite evident with Chairman Powell. Regardless of RFI issues, they are not doing due diligence to see test results, examine the facts, etc. They are willing to put out an RFI source capable of disabling multi spectrum sources.

    So what is the role of the FCC? Hmmm...Makes one wonder.
  2. K6UEY

    K6UEY Ham Member QRZ Page

    But just think about it,without the FCC all that budgeted Tax money would go to waste.The Congressional Budget would be upset. Congress would have to hold special sessions to determine where that money should go,some might even have to show up for meetings and voting ( note: Senator Kerry).It would disrupt the total schedule in Washington,DC. Happy Anniversary F.C.C.     [​IMG]
  3. W0LC

    W0LC Ham Member QRZ Page

    I would prefer, if it were possible, to just do away with the FCC as far as amateur radio goes, take a set percentage of taxes from all licensed amateurs from their annual Federal Taxes and direct it to the ARRL to manage the spectrum. I think it would work better with someone directly involved with amateur radio. Enforcement would be a joint exercise with the ARRL and FCC together.
  4. K6UEY

    K6UEY Ham Member QRZ Page

    Of course it sounds like a good idea,but for every good idea there are hundreds of Dudley DoGooders who are against it. I would harbor a guess that many of the old timers in the FCC would support such and idea. The FCC has been trying to get The Amateur Radio Albatross off their backs for Decades.If you get the oppurtunity talk to some ex FCC Field Engineers about what the members of the FCC think about Ham Radio it will be enlightening.Of course to turn it over to ARRL would bring W5YI out of the night wanting a piece of the action,that could stir the pudding a bit.Not sure how the new contention that refuse to join ARRL or even recognize any element of authority,some of them have become pretty righteous,after the FCC allowed them to run wild for 15 years with out enforcement.The new 21st Century Changes seldom recognize any of the old traditions or moral values,so the so called Gentlemans Agreements of the past are of little value.Not having the Force of Law behind any organization, it will be a RUFF Row to Hoe.   [​IMG]
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