Encouraging Congress to get Licensed

Nov 15, 2016

by Jerry A. Goodson W5BFF

I received the email from the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) asking for support and action to urge congress to pass the Amateur Radio Parity Act.  The league provided a convenient link (https://arrl.rallycongress.net/ctas/urge-us-senate-to-pass-amateur-radio-parity-act) where all I had to do was enter my name, address, email address, and phone number, and a pre-filled form letter would be sent to my senators on my behalf.

I went to the link and followed the instructions with a small twist!  I added a small note at the end that encouraged Senator Cornyn and Senator Cruz to obtain their amateur radio license.

November 15, 2016

Dear Sen. John Cornyn (R TX):
Dear Sen. Ted Cruz (R TX):

As a constituent and one of more than 51,366 FCC - licensed Amateur Radio Operators in the State of Texas , I am writing to ask that you now support the Amateur Radio Parity Act when it comes to the Senate floor during the upcoming lame duck session of Congress. The legislation has passed the House by voice vote in two different forms: as H.R. 1301 in stand-alone form and as part of the Communications Act Update package, S. 253.

This bill replaces S. 1685 and provides a mutually satisfactory compromise reached between the ARRL (the national association for Amateur Radio) and the Community Associations Institute (CAI), which represents home owners associations. This bill allows for effective outdoor Amateur Radio antennas for public service and emergency communications while protecting the prerogative of community associations. As amended, the legislation now enjoys universal support from both organizations.

The bill has also received the endorsement of the American Red Cross, which stated that this “legislation will greatly enhance the volunteer communications efforts by radio Amateurs that have benefited public safety organizations for many years.” The National Hurricane Center added their voice in support and wrote that “(A)mateur radio operators are sometimes the only sources of eyewitness information from inside the storm.” And The Salvation Army wrote “(W)e rely on Amateur Radio, and this legislation is urgently important to the continued provision of their volunteer services in emergency communications. We urge the passage of H.R. 1301…”

Texas has always relied on and benefited from Amateur Radio’s critical communications support in time of need. We have been prepared for, and involved in the response to virtually every disaster in Texas volunteering to provide communications, at no cost to anyone. The bill will allow Amateurs to continue to provide the same critical communications service to our communities as we have for over the past 100-plus years.

The bill equitably balances the interests of all parties. It ensures that community associations permit effective outdoor antennas, and protects community associations’ authority to adopt and enforce reasonable written rules concerning the installation, placement, and aesthetic impact of external amateur service station antennas. It also requires notification to the association and their prior approval of antenna installations and prohibits installation of antennas on common property. The rights and responsibilities of both community associations and association residents are completely protected.

I ask that you support the passage of this consensus, bipartisan legislation when it comes before you for a vote on the Senate floor.

Thank you for your consideration.

On a side note, have you ever considered getting your amateur radio license? It's not very difficult to study and pass the examination. Upgrade to General Class, and I believe you'd enjoy chatting with a lot of your constituents on the 80m band! Feel free to contact me on how you can get licensed! My phone number is 430-342-3376. This offer is extended to your staff, as well.


Mr. Jerry Goodson
2674 CR 3214, 2674
Atlanta, TX 75551

After all, what better way to garner representation from congress than by assimilation?  I don't know if the request will ever come across Senator Cornyn or Senator Cruz's eyes, but hopefully an intern or staff member will not just see it, but take action themselves.