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Posted Sep 21, 2010

HURRICANE EARL - Thankfully Hurricane Earl remained 85 miles east of the Outer Banks, but state ARES was activated from 1700 on Thursday, September 2nd through 0830 on Friday September 3rd. In all, 17 coastal counties activated their ARES operations with several more on standby. For many months well in advance of hurricane season, former Assistant Section Emergency Coordinator (ASEC) for the Eastern Branch, Ron Knapp, W9EF, expressed interest in stepping down on September 1st, and did so. Replacing him is John Sprouse, N4VJJ, former Emergency Coordinator (EC) for Beaufort County and a former federal public safety official. Both Ron and John worked together through North Carolina Emergency Management's (NCEM) Eastern Branch office in Kinston during Hurricane Earl.

SET EXERCISE - Many have asked if there will be a SET exercise the first Saturday in October as there has been in the past. It won't take place on that date but keep your eyes and ears open for some special SETs coming up in the near future.

JOTA - 2010 marks the 100th anniversary of the Boy Scouts of America, and the third full weekend in October is always JOTA, or Jamboree-On-The-Air. This October 16-17 marks the 53rd year for JOTA, one of the very few Scouting events which is open to all Scouts around the globe, and encourages participation from all Scouts, including Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, Brownies, etc. Clubs in Shelby, Wilmington, Greensboro and along the Blue Ridge plan to host Boy Scout troops by setting up Field Day like stations. The Azalea Coast ARC in Wilmington plans to teach the Radio Merit Badge in conjunction with its JOTA operation. If you know of a JOTA event in North Carolina, please list it at the NCJOTA group within Yahoo Groups, and send a listing to me too, and I'll send out a special JOTA locations announcement to the section the week before JOTA begins. To learn more about JOTA, go to JOTA is the perfect opportunity to tell young people about Amateur Radio. See my comments in the "Last Word" section below.

DIAMOND ANNIVERSARY - Congratulations to 98 year old Bill Finch, W4EHF, of Greenville on being licensed 75 years. Bill's no slouch. He's still a regular on the North Carolina Morning Net at 0745 on 3927 KHz, he serves as a Net Control Operator on the Eastern NC Traffic Net, and he's a nationally ranked badminton player! Bill is also one of the founding members of the Tar Heel Emergency Net. Thanks, Bill, for all you have done and continue to do for Amateur Radio in the Old North State.

AMATEUR RADIO BILL GETS ANOTHER N.C. SPONSOR - U.S. Rep. David Price (D-4th District representing Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area) is the second North Carolina Congressman to become a co-sponsor of HR2160, The Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Enhancement Act of 2009. Rep. Price joins rep. Mike McIntyre (D-7th District representing Lumberton/Wilmington). If enacted into law, HR 2160, would instruct the Secretary of Homeland Security to undertake a study and report its findings to Congress within 180 days. The study would spell out uses and capabilities of Amateur Radio communications in emergencies and disaster relief. The study shall:

The bill first needs to be heard by the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, two of whose North Carolina members are Rep. Sue Myrick of Union, Gaston and portions of Mecklenburg counties, and Rep. G.K. Butterfield who represents much of northeastern NC. Those Hams living in their districts are encouraged to email Reps. Myrick and Butterfield to become both co-sponsors of HR2160 and to have them encourage committee chairman Rep. Henry Waxman of California to schedule hearings on the bill. With just a few weeks left in this session of Congress, there is no much time left to pass this bill, and if it isn't brought up for a vote now, it will have to be introduced in the next session of Congress in 2011. Many thanks to our State Government Liaison (SGL) Dr. Bob Conder, K4RLC, for getting Rep. David Price to become an HR2160 co-sponsor.

CLUB NEWS - In late August the IRS released a list of 4,000 non-profit organizations in North Carolina which had not filed annual tax reports, even if they didn't owe taxes. Eight NC Amateur Radio organizations appeared on the list. They have until October 15th to file and have penalties waived under an amnesty provision. Please remember that:

PUBLIC SERVICE - Sept 25, Step Out For Diabetes, Durham; Sept. 25-26, MS Bike Breakaway To The Beach, NC locations near Charlotte and Brunswick counties, details at ;Oct 9, Light The Night Walk, downtown Raleigh; Oct. 21, Light The Night, downtown Durham. For more public service opportunities, go to and after an event, please complete an ARRL Public Service Activity Report at

AUGUST NTS REPORTS - QNI (Net station check-ins) 2,942, up 423 or 16%. Messages passed - 501, up 112 or 28%. STATION ACTIVITY REPORTS (SARs) K4IWW 479, W2EAG 232, W4DNA 110, WK4P 78, W4TTO 74, KE4AHC 42, K8SKX 25, W3HL 18, KC4PGN 12, NC4VA 12. AUGUST PUBLIC SERVICE HONOR ROLL (PSHR) NC4VA 210, W4DNA 135, K4IWW 130, W2EAG 110, W4TTO 105, KD4KFR 49.

ARES - Members, 675 (+ 3), ICS credentialed 210. (+ 30) DEC/EC reports - 39 out of 100 counties (+3). ATTN ECs and DECs - if you're not filing your monthly reports, your ARES members aren't included in section reports. HAMFESTS - Pfafftown, Oct. 9, Talk-In 146.64 (PL 100.0); Maysville, Oct. 10, Talk-In, 146.685 (PL 88.5). NOTE: American Radio Lighthouse Society Convention in Kill Devil Hills on Oct. 8 has been cancelled. SKs - I regret to announce the passing of 31 year old Charlie White, KI4HRP, of Elizabeth City due to an accident. Our sympathies also go to the family of Vince Palazzo, K2GDD, of Hampstead.

LAST WORD - Let's face it. The predominant hair color at Hamfests and club meetings is gray - or no hair at all! You don't see many young faces in the crowd. That's why the annual Scouting Jamboree On-The-Air (JOTA) every October is the perfect time to showcase Amateur Radio to youth. According to Scout officials, JOTA draws 500,000 worldwide participants over its 48 hour period, which this year runs from 8 PM, Friday, October 15th to 8 PM Sunday, October 17th. And it's not just Boy Scouts. JOTA is open to any boys or girls in Scouting. Many of you may know I have been a registered Boy Scout leader since 1995, and I've tried to hold a JOTA station every year. My experience is that long distance SSB gets Ho-Hum reviews from scouts because most of them have cell phones (what's the big deal?), but kids really dig CW and digital modes. When kids do connect by voice, they enjoy talking with one another. I once hosted a 40 minute QSO on 12 meters with a troop of Boy scouts on Barbados who explained the game of cricket to some local scouts, and another QSO with scouts who were kayak mobile! So what can you do to promote JOTA?

Remember, the future of Amateur Radio is youth. Let's show them the fun of Amateur Radio.

73 de Bill
Bill Morine, N2COP
ARRL North Carolina Section Manager
For the latest news about Amateur radio in North Carolina, go to the section's website at and on Facebook at NC ARRL