January 1998

Time to celebrate the end of another year and the beginning of 1998. It is hard to believe that time is passing so quickly but when we review all that has been accomplished this last year it doesn't seem as surprising. Four more General Meetings, all well attended, from Thousand Oaks to Long Beach and in-between. A major Repeater Coordination and Spectrum Management Forum at the ARRL SWD Convention. New faces in the fold, some returning after several years of inactivity and others brand new to 220 MHz. Dozens of new and revised coordinations processed to completion by a dedicated Coordination Board. Active involvement by those interested in how the 220 MHz. Bands are managed and used. Hard decisions made (made by the membership) regarding changes that will allow the 220 MHz. Bands to grow and improve. I want to thank all of you for a good year, and I want to wish everyone the best in 1998.

ELECTION TIME - The new year brings with it renewal. One of the ways the SMA renews itself is by electing Officers for the new year at the Annual General Meeting in January. It is time for you to decide how you want to change your organization through the election of new Officers. Please consider offering some of your time to the organization. I believe the current Officers have served you well but is it time for a change? How about some new blood? In any case, please attend the January meeting at Parker Center and make sure your input is heard.

BY-LAWS CHANGE - COORDINATION BOARD VACANT POSITION REPLACEMENT - The proposed changes are now in final form and adoption will be considered at the Annual General Meeting. Another good reason for making sure you are in attendance. The details of the changes are presented elsewhere in this Bulletin, along with an Absentee Ballot just in case you absolutely can't attend. Please read the proposal carefully, there have been some additional enhancements included.

220SMA ON THE WEB - <> Reaction to the 220SMA Web Pages continues to be very positive. Information on Coordination Board activities and Coordinated Repeater Status, as well as general SMA news is available there first. Several individuals have found out about us on the Web and requested membership information. Even these comments are there (here) for all to read. If you haven't done so already, stop by and browse.

SYSTEM UPDATES - I can not stress too strongly how important it is for all repeater and auxiliary owners to keep your Coordination records up-to-date. Don't wait for one of our periodic reviews to tell us that you want to make (have made) changes. It is much easier to work with you on what you want to do, if you contact the Coordination Board in a timely manner. If you have been causing problems, waiting until we issue you a Notice of Intent to De-Coordinate may well be too late.

NATIONAL FREQUENCY COORDINATORS' COUNCIL (NFCC) - The NFCC is still trying to get started. Another proposed Membership Application failed to gain acceptance and the Council is now holding elections and voting on reducing the 75% approval requirement written into the original Bylaws, without the benefit of a formal membership. My seat on the Board will be decided by this election. I tried to convince the Board that Charter Membership was already defined in the Bylaws and that as Treasurer, I should be allowed to start signing up the eligible Coordination entities, but they were in too big a hurry to have the elections. They have also put off the required in-person Annual Meeting where the elections are supposed to be held, and decided that electronic mail balloting is an acceptable alternative despite what the Bylaws say. Three of the five people I am running against are representatives from Coordination entities belonging to the Mid-America Coordination Council (MACC). If both of the open seats are filled from this group, the five-member NFCC Board will have three MACC members. Needless to say, in my opinion, the prospects of being able to form an organization that has national acceptance, and the needed respect of the FCC, are very poor at this time.

I look forward to seeing you at the January General Meeting. Please come get involved in your hobby and bring a fellow 220 MHz. Ham so (s)he can understand what we are all about, and maybe join us.


Jim Fortney


P.O. Box 3419, Camarillo, CA 93011-3419