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ARRL NC Section Newsletter

October 2016

Greetings from Karl W4CHX, your ARRL NC Section Manager!

REMINDER! MOMENTUM BUILDING TO URGE SENATE PASSAGE OF THE AMATEUR RADIO PARITY ACT – The response to ARRL’s call to action urging the support of US Senators for the Amateur Radio Parity Act, H.R. 1301, has been gratifying — although the campaign continues. For further information, see (source: ARRL website)

Presently, the US Senate has recessed without acting upon the Amateur Radio Parity Act. But, that does not mean ARRL Members should take a break – your help is still needed! As of October 20th, more than 62,000 letters have been sent to Capitol Hill, including 1,036 letters that have been delivered to each office of our US Senators – Senators Richard Burr and Thom Tillis. If you have not sent letters, please use the Rally Congress tool to contact Senators Burr and Tillis and request their support of HR 1301 by voting favorably for the Bill. Here is the website for the Rally Congress tool: (source: Dan Henderson, N1ND, ARRL Regulatory Information Manager)

RECENT SUCCESS STORIES ON ANTENNA SUPPORT STRUCTURE PERMITS – While we wait for projected passage and enactment of HR 1301 Amateur Radio Parity Act by the US Senate, there have been two recent success stories where NC Hams living in areas not covered by homeowner covenants, conditions, and restrictions (CCRs) overcame antenna support structure restrictions through the use of existing federal rules and State statutes.

Larry J. Ford, K4AEC, ARRL Volunteer Counsel, Roanoke Division, reports a recent case which resulted in amateur radio operators in Caldwell County now being able to erect antenna support structures, such as towers, in single-family residential zoning districts. Previously, the County Attorney for Caldwell County had issued a ruling that stated zoning permits could not be issued for amateur radio towers on property zoned single-family residential, thereby relegating amateur towers to commercial or other zoning districts. Of course, the vast majority of hams want and need their towers as accessory structures to their homes, and the County Attorney's ruling prevented that in most cases.

After learning of the ruling, Larry K4AEC contacted the County Attorney and over the course of several weeks, provided the County Attorney with the legal authority, including Federal case law, Regulations, FCC PRB-1, and the North Carolina Statute on amateur radio towers, all of which require a local government to "reasonably accommodate" amateur radio antennas support structures including towers. After these communications, the County Attorney reversed his ruling, and the ham whose application was denied received his zoning permit to construct his tower.

Larry K4AEC also reports this was the second similar case recently in North Carolina, as he was involved with a similar matter in the City of High Point a couple of years ago, which resulted in the City of High Point amending its Zoning Ordinance to allow towers.

Larry K4AEC stated: "From my experience, a lot of City and County Attorneys, as well as Zoning Administration officials, are totally unaware of the Federal law and state statutes which prevent local governments from summarily denying or prohibiting amateur radio towers. In many cases, I can talk to the City or County attorney, provide the legal authority they are unfamiliar with, and achieve a positive outcome. I encourage ARRL Members to contact me or one of the other Volunteer Counsels (all of whom are licensed hams) if a tower application has been denied so we can attempt to rectify the situation on an informal basis (there is no charge to an ARRL Member for an initial consultation). However, there are cases where the local government is so entrenched in its position that the only solution is litigation, as we experienced a few years ago in the Charlotte tower case." For further information on ARRL Volunteer Counsel Program, see Thanks to Larry J. Ford, K4AEC, ARRL Volunteer Counsel, for his efforts on behalf of amateur radio operators in the NC Section! (sources: ARRL website, N2COP, K4AEC)

CURRENT RULES HOLDING HAMS BACK FROM ADOPTING STATE-OF-THE-ART TECHNOLOGY, ARRL SAYS (DEADLINE, 11/10) – In comments filed on October 12 with the FCC, ARRL reiterated its case that the FCC should change the Part 97 rules both to delete the symbol rate limits in Section 97.307(f) and replace them with a maximum bandwidth for data emissions of 2.8 kHz on amateur frequencies below 29.7 MHz. In a July Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) in WT Docket 16-239, the FCC proposed to eliminate the current baud rate limitations for data emissions, consistent with ARRL’s Petition, but it declined to propose a bandwidth limitation for data emissions in the MF and HF bands to replace the baud rate limitations. The deadline to file comments in the proceeding — ie, comments on comments already filed — is November 10. For further information, see (source: ARRL website)

2016 SKYWARN RECOGNITION DAY (12/3) – 2016 SKYWARN Recognition Day will be held on Saturday, December 3, 2016, from 0000z to 2400z. For further information, see Thanks to Janice Hopkins, KJ4JPE, an ARRL-trained Public Information Officer, and Bill Morine, N2COP, ARRL Roanoke Division Vice Director, for providing this information! (sources: KJ4JPE, N2COP, ARRL website)

ARRL INVITES NOMINATIONS FOR 2016 INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN AWARD (DEADLINE, 12/31) – Nominations are open for the 2016 ARRL International Humanitarian Award. The Award is conferred upon an individual radio amateur or Amateur Radio group that has demonstrated devotion to human welfare, peace, and international understanding through Amateur Radio. The League established this annual Award to recognize Amateur Radio operators who have used ham radio to provide extraordinary service to others in times of crisis or disaster. All nominations and supporting materials for the 2016 Award must be submitted in writing in English to the ARRL by December 31, 2016. For further information, see (source: ARRL website)

REMINDER! ARRL FOUNDATION INVITES SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATIONS FOR 2017-18 ACADEMIC YEAR (DEADLINE, 1/31/17) – The ARRL Foundation will begin accepting scholarship applications on October 1st from eligible radio amateurs planning to pursue post-secondary education during the 2017-18 academic year. Completed applications must be received by January 31, 2017. For further information, see (source: ARRL website)

ARRL GAUGING IMPACT OF REVISED CALIFORNIA DISTRACTED DRIVING LAW – California has upped its game in cracking down on distracted driving, and radio amateurs there are concerned that a recent revision to the state’s Motor Vehicle Code could affect Amateur Radio mobile operation. For further information, see (source: ARRL website)

FALL 2016 ISSUE OF RADIO WAVES ANNOUNCES NEW INSTRUCTOR RECOGNITION PROGRAM – The Fall 2016 edition of Radio Waves now is available. The ARRL publication focuses on news and articles of interest to educators and instructors. The Fall 2016 issue announces the launch of the new Instructor Recognition Program. Other highlights of the fall issue include: the articles, “Building blocks illustrate basic electronics, The Easton Amateur Radio Society Technical Institute, and Ham radio flies high as summer camp at Kopernik Observatory”; an update on recent ARISS activities; the Instructor Corner; and, a report on the 2016 summer Teachers Institutes.

On page 5, Radio Waves reported that 8 Boy Scouts staffed the youth station at RARSfest, the annual hamfest sponsored by the Raleigh Amateur Radio Society (RARS). While supervised by adult control operators, the Scouts were the main members of the youth station team and worked VHF repeater, HF SSB, and HF digital modes. The successful outreach is part of RARS’ efforts to draw Boy Scouts and in the future, Girl Scouts, into amateur radio. Thanks to RARS and the supervising Hams for incorporating a youth station in their hamfest!

For further information, including how to receive Radio Waves via email, see (sources: ARRL website, K4MHM)

ARRL NATIONAL PARKS ON THE AIR 2016 – For information on rules, answers to frequently asked questions, activator tips and NPS documents, NPOTA documents, answers to basic questions from NPS employees, the Leaderboard, list of NPOTA units, merchandise, NPOTA on social media, and latest news, see (source: ARRL website)

LICENSE CLASSES – No license classes have been posted through January 31, 2017. To find upcoming classes, go to Please note that a license class sponsored by your club or organization will not be listed on the ARRL website unless you register your class. ARRL Registered Instructors may list upcoming classes on the ARRL website. For further information, see Also, please let me know if your club is sponsoring a license class. Thanks! (source: ARRL website)

MEDIA HITS AND REPORTS – The following media hits and reports are included in this month’s newsletter:

STOLEN EQUIPMENT ALERT! The following message (edited) was forwarded by Jim Johnson, KI4TAT and Van Vander Clute, N4ERM: “Stolen equipment … I had some ham equipment stolen from my house on Atlantic Beach on Sunday, October 9th. If you don't mind passing it on to your members, I would appreciate them being on the lookout and let the AB police know if they see items that would appear to be from this list. Yaesu HF-VHF FT-857D radio, serial number 5F970403; MFJ-937Y antenna tuner; Buddipole portable antenna in carrying bag; antenna analyzer, IP-302 from Buddipole; MFJ-4215P power supply; Pelican carrying case for the radio, tuner, cables, and analyzer; and, small Pelican carrying case for the power supply. These items probably will turn up at a flea market somewhere. Thanks in advance for any assistance you can give. 73, Lynn Ford W9CLF, (919) 880-4478.” (sources: KI4TAT, N4ERM, W9CLF)

A newspaper clipping dated October 6th was received from Janice Hopkins, KJ4JPE, which reported on some of the Hurricane Matthew preparations being made by Newport SKYWARN and the Carteret County Amateur Radio Society (online link not available). Thanks to those individuals involved with emergency preparedness and service during Hurricane Matthew; and, thanks to Janice Hopkins, KJ4JPE, an ARRL-trained Public Information Officer, for providing this media hit!

The following media hit was sent by Stan White, KI4NC: “?All, This story was posted on the Wilmington Star-News website this afternoon.? … Thank you Stephen [Russ] NI4SR for using your ham radio license to help others! Thank you for your service to community and County! FB! BZ! 73 Stan KI4NC.” See Thanks to Stan White, KI4NC, President, Hampstead Hams, for providing this media hit! (sources: KI4NC, N2COP, ARRL website)

On Murphy Boy Scout Troop 400 and Cub Scout Pack 400, and JOTA, see Thanks to all Hams participating in this JOTA station; and, thanks to Kevin Heyboer, KD4UYR, Assistant Emergency Coordinator (Cherokee County), for providing this media hit! (sources: KD4UYR, Google search, ARRL website)

The following report was sent by James Johnson, KI4TAT: “Moore County Amateur Radio Society (MOCARS) Simulated Emergency Test (SET). MOCARS regularly conducts training exercises to improve our emergency response capability and communications skills. On Saturday, 10/1/2016, 15 MOCARS members responded to a simulated emergency net call and were dispersed to key locations around Moore County including the Emergency Operations Center in Carthage, Moore Regional Hospital and shelter locations at Southern Middle School, North Moore High School and New Century School, a digital relay center, ARES Command Center and two (2) alternate Net Control locations. Personal communications equipment was set up at each location and reliable intracommunications established. Scope of the activity coverage included 15 hams at 10 locations, passing multiple voice and digital communications messages. Amateur radio will provide reliable communications when all other methods fail.” Thanks to James Johnson, KI4TAT, an ARRL-trained Public Information Officer, for providing this report!

The following report (edited) was received from the Lenoir Amateur Radio Club: “Hazmat Exercise at Happy Valley School. … The Lenoir Amateur Radio Club and Caldwell ARES and [NC AUXCOMM Society] members participated in a Hazmat Exercise today at Happy Valley School. … [For further information, see] …” Thanks to all participants in the Hazmat Exercise for their public service, and the Lenoir Amateur Radio Club for providing this report!


QNI (total check-ins): 1,744; Total messages passed: 583.

Station Activity Reports (SARs), total number: K4IWW 293, WC9CW 161, AK4RJ 155, WB4ZIQ 139, KC4PGN 124, WK4WC 112, KB4RGC 85, W4DNA 79, KF4OCU 50, W4TTO 48, KW4PD 44, W4EAT 43, KW4EMG 42, W3HL 41, KE4AHC 35, KJ4JPE 25, W2EAG 0.

Public Service Honor Roll (PSHR), total number: KW4EMG 226, WC9CW 185, WB4ZIQ 180, W4DNA 155, KB4RGC 150, KW4PD 140, KJ4JPE 135, K4IWW 130, WK4WC 130, W4TTO 100, AK4RJ 95, KI4UDZ 92, KF4OCU 74.

Thanks to all stations for participating in NC Section traffic activities; and, to Dave Roy, W4DNA, Section Traffic Manager, for providing this information!

SILENT KEYS – With deep regret, the passing of the following amateur radio operators is reported: Alfred Quincy (“Al”) Cooke, NC4AL (SK) of Raleigh; Donald James Cowden, Sr, N8DDK (SK) of Knightdale; Donald A. Donadio, KT4KV (SK) of Winston-Salem, NC; Lloyd Milton Spencer, KA9MNR (SK) of Charlotte; and, John L. ("Les") Zavadil, W4FRA (SK) of Rocky Mount. Please note it is not possible to post information about an amateur radio operator that has become a Silent Key without confirmation via a copy of an obituary or death certificate.


November 5: Veteran Day Parade Special Event Station, 1330Z-2100Z, W4YMI, Newport, NC. Carteret County Amateur Radio Society. 14.270 14.260 7.260. Certificate. Carteret County Amateur Radio Society, PO Box 1302, Newport, NC 28570.

November 11: WB4TAL Veterans Day Special Event Station, 0200Z-0900Z, WB4TAL, Fuquay Varina, NC. American Legion Post 116. 14.260 14.265 14.255 14.250. QSL. Kenn Kubacki, WB4TAL, 6400 Johnson Pond Rd, Fuquay Varina, NC 27526. WB4TAL being the first and only American Legion Post Station will have a special event to honor all veterans that have fought for our freedom.

November 11: The following information (edited) was provided by Irv McWherter, K3IRV: “American Legion Legionnaires will honor their fellow veterans in a special on-the-air amateur radio tribute on Veterans Day, Friday, Nov. 11, 2016. Members of The American Legion Amateur Radio Club (TALARC) will operate on the short wave bands starting at 9:00 AM through 4:30 PM EST (1400 - 2130Z), using the call sign K9TAL. Any ham radio operators who contact the station are eligible to receive an attractive full-color commemorative certificate. After working K9TAL, send a 9x12 inch self-addressed stamped envelope to The American Legion Amateur Radio Club, 700 N. Pennsylvania Street, Indianapolis, IN 46204.” Thanks for Irv McWherter, K3IRV, Public Information Coordinator, for providing this information!

Special Event Station listings in the NC Section newsletter are based on what appears on the ARRL website, see Please consider listing your Special Event Station at least 60 days before the event, see Also, please let me know if your club is sponsoring a Special Event Station. Thanks! (sources: ARRL website, K3IRV)


November 20: JARSFest 2016, Johnston Amateur Radio Society, Benson, NC,

January 14, 2017: Winston-Salem FirstFest, Forsyth Amateur Radio Club, Winston-Salem, NC,

March 10-11, 2017: Charlotte Hamfest, Mecklenburg Amateur Radio Society, Concord, NC,

April 15, 2017: Catawba Valley Hamfest, McDowell Amateur Radio Association, Morganton, NC,

April 15, 2017: 45th Annual RARSFest/ARRL Roanoke Division Convention, Raleigh Amateur Radio Society, Raleigh, NC,

April 28-29, 2017: 2017 SVHFS Conference, Southeastern VHF Society, Charlotte, NC,

July 15, 2017: Mid-Summer SWAPFEST, Cary Amateur Radio Club, Cary, NC,

September 1-3, 2017: 61st Annual Shelby Hamfest/ARRL North Carolina State Convention, Shelby Amateur Radio Club, Shelby, NC,

It is not too early to apply for ARRL-affiliation of your club’s 2017 hamfest! For more information, see (source: ARRL website)

QUA* – It is hard to believe what happened during Hurricane Matthew. My thoughts and prayers are extended to all that have suffered loss – whether that is to their property, to their wellbeing, or due to the injury or death of loved ones or friends. I thank the untold number of individuals, including the Ham-volunteers, who have been involved in the disaster management and rescue response. Those individuals have given much to their communities and its residents. Again, thanks for a “job well done”, which is still not finished.

I want to thank all Hams, Scouts, and Scouters that participated in Jamboree On The Air, which was held on October 14-16. Unfortunately, flooding from Hurricane Matthew affected the plans for several registered JOTA stations in eastern North Carolina, which resulted in “scaled down” or cancelled JOTA operations. I am very sorry that Hurricane Matthew affected this worthwhile, youth program. It is hoped that future Jamborees On The Air proceed uneventfully.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or want to provide input on our Section. I can be reached via email at or via cell phone. As always, thank you for sending your emails, photos, and club newsletters – they keep me informed about your activities and programs! I look forward to seeing you at an upcoming hamfest or club meeting. Thanks for everything you are doing for amateur radio and your community. 73, Karl Bowman, W4CHX, ARRL North Carolina Section Manager, (919) 669-6068 (cell)