Additional Postings - 2000
Additional Postings - 1998 - 1999
Editor's Note: This section is for material too lengthy to be included in the normal CGC Communicator but which may be of interest to our readers.
12/20/00 - PERSONAL REMARKS ABOUT THE SBE CHAPTER 36 AWARD WINNERS
11/21/00 - NOTES FROM THE BURBANK STE MEETING ON COFDM VS. 8-VSB
11/08/00 - FCC DAILY DIGEST URLs ARE SLOW TO DOWNLOAD
10/27/00 - I REMEMBER THE STORY A LITTLE DIFFERENTLY
10/18/00 - ABOUT KFXM, AND SOMETHING YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT HELEN JONES
09/08/00 - WIRELESS MIKES IN TV BANDS MUST BE LICENSED
08/29/00 - COMMENTS ON JOHN REISER AND HIS RETIREMENT FROM THE FCC
07/12/00 - Self-Oscillating Preamps - Two Problems
07/07/00 - Comments re Self-Oscillating Recreational Vehicle TV Antenna Preamps
06/30/00 - RFI From Self-Oscillating Recreational Vehicle TV Antenna Preamps
03/29/00 - PLAN TO BAN BROADCASTING FROM SANTIAGO PEAK
02/16/00 - ANTI-AIRCRAFT GUNS AT KHJ - 1940s
02/12/00 - COURT OF APPEALS UPHOLDS FCC'S PREEMPTION OVER RFI
02/03/00 - ORDER ON RECONSIDERATION OF 99-393
01/27/00 - RM-2493: ANOTHER INTERNET RUMOR DISPELLED
01/26/00 - CHIEF ENGINEER OPENING AT KROQ(FM), LOS ANGELES
01/14/00 - UCTV BEGINS BROADCASTING ON ECHOSTAR CHANNEL 9412
01/05/00 - NEAR DISASTERS AT KVYY & KLYY
01/05/00 - LOS ANGELES RADIO JAMMER NABBED
PERSONAL REMARKS ABOUT THE SBE CHAPTER 36 AWARD WINNERS I was unable to get to San Diego to help Chapter 36 honor Charlie Abel, John Barcroft and Jack Williams. It has been my honor to know and work with each of these distinguished broadcasters. I cannot let that event go by without adding my words to what is by now a long list of heartfelt congratulations. I must also congratulate SBE Chapter 36 on highlighting the careers and contributions of three special San Diego-based broadcast engineers. We all owe the three honorees our thanks for their dedication and contributions, but I have a personal debt of respect to pay to each. I hired John to replace me at KGB when I left San Diego for KFWB in 1975. Charlie Abel helped pioneer Part 74 frequency coordination when a few of us started what many thought was an impossible task in 1976. And Jack's System One consoles are still on the air at KFWB after more than two decades of continuous use. And, special thanks to you, Bob, for your continuing efforts to inform, educate, and occasionally entertain all of your many subscribers through your newsletter that, if my memory serves me correctly, you began to publish back in the days when you actually had to distribute it using the United States Mail. Richard Rudman
NOTES FROM THE BURBANK STE MEETING ON COFDM VS. 8-VSB Subject: COFDM vs. 8-VSB By: Jim Mendrala Source: Tech Note #066 Reprinted: With Permission Nat S. Ostroff, Vice President, New Technology, Sinclair Broadcast Group presented the program at the (Burbank) Society of Television Engineers meeting on November 16, 2000. With an intro from David Smith, CEO, Sinclair Broadcast Group, and some comments by Mark Hyman, VP of Government Affairs, Sinclair Broadcast Group. Mr. Ostroff gave a short history of the COFDM vs. 8VSB debate. He discussed the advantages and disadvantages of both systems and presented some of the actual field results of the testing done in Philadelphia, PA, Baltimore, MD, New York, NY and Raleigh, NC. He also did a comparison with NTSC reception on fixed antennas, bowtie antennas and a whip antenna. A comparison of the two different types of digital transmission was presented with a view as to the effects of choosing one over the other, as applied to a TV stations digital wireless business. Mr. Ostroff, when asked about HDTV signals, said that at the NAB 2000 they not only transmitted SDTV from a transmitter 17 miles from the Las Vegas Convention Center but also HDTV at 19.3 Mb/s. Pictures were being received not only with a fixed antenna mounted on the roof but also with a whip antenna on the convention floor. Another advantage of COFDM was that you do not need to change frequency when going through a repeater. A simple distribution amp can be used to amplify the signal inside of difficult buildings or sites. As far as the digital picture is concerned, there isnt any difference in either system. But as far as flexibility, scalability and ease of use, the COFDM system has a lot going for it. Mr. Ostroff pointed out that the traditional C/N method of coverage does not tell the whole story of DTV reception. Multipath is a killer for 8VSB and is a big trouble when closer in to the transmitter. A lot of DTV receivers would display the Blue Screen of Death even though there was a strong signal but the receiver was unable to decipher the payload due to multipath. COFDM on the other hand seems to thrives on multipath. Modification of the transmitter to COFDM is relatively cheap and simple to do in most cases, as he pointed out. Transmission line matching and SWR are not as critical. A directional bow tie antenna in the COFDM system can be rotated in a strong signal area up to 270 degrees and still receive beautiful pictures. With 8VSB, a Yagi with up to 26 elements needed and had to be pointed very carefully to receive a picture. In the long run, the difference between COFDM and 8VSB was about a two-mile difference at the RF horizon. Mr. Ostroff said that presently there is a small low power COFDM station operating on Long Island and reception in the canyons of New York City is quite robust, and reception with a whip antenna in a moving vehicle was fine. Mr. David Smith presented a case for the allowing of both systems to be authorized in the US with the market place ultimately deciding which method will survive. Mr. Smiths concern was that most TV engineers are doing nothing to let their elected officials know what is happening. Many do not want to rock the boat for fear of losing their jobs and seem to be refraining from informing management of the situation. He pointed out that cable, Internet and other content distribution systems do not need an FCC license to operate. He said that Zenith, which was formerly an American Company that went bankrupt and is know owned by a Korean company, and the new Zenith owners as well as DirecTV are lobbying for 8VSB only, while the rest of the world has or are about to settled on COFDM. DirecTV, he said, was lobbying for 8VSB so as to increase its signups for satellite reception. At the rate it is going, if the US sticks to 8VSB, only we (along with Korea) will end up becoming an island in the sea of nations who have all gone COFDM. Mr. Smith was not suggesting abandoning 8VSB but allowing co-existence of 8VSB with COFDM. When the marketplace determines that there no longer is a need for 8VSB, then it could be dropped. Mr. Smith also stated that presently there are about 50,000 8VSB DTV receivers in the US. He sees no reason to worry about the legacy issues because if the broadcasters would pay those owners of 8VSB receivers $1,000, they could apply that to the purchase of a new COFDM receiver. That amount of money would be very small for what is at stake. In England, Mr. Smith said the sale of COFDM receivers has already passed the 1,000,000 mark and is climbing rapidly since its introduction. Mr. Smith, Nat Ostroff and Mark Hyman all voiced their concerns that if we dont speak up now through our congressmen and senators, then Free TV as we know it will disappear for lack of viewers. NTSC will go away! After the meeting, Mark Hyman joined Mr. Ostroff and Mr. Smith in answered many of the interesting questions the broadcasters of Southern California had.
FCC DAILY DIGEST URLs ARE SLOW TO DOWNLOAD The FCC switched to the EDOCS system because we had to deal with the fact that our old system, the Digital Daily Digest, had become technologically obsolete and couldn't be repaired to work reliably in our current environment. The new URLs are noticeably slower, however we are working very hard to improve the speed of retrieval. We are also working to have EDOCS transferred to a faster database server which would improve the retrieval speed. In addition, we will continue to load all documents into "Daily Business" directories, so users can always use that version of the document, which will open faster. The advantages of EDOCS over the Digital Daily Digest justifies making the switch over despite the delay in document opening, but we are working to improve that situation as well. Sheryl Segal, FCC, Washington
I REMEMBER THE STORY A LITTLE DIFFERENTLY In response to the letter posted immediately below by Bill Hayes, Helen Jones responds as follows: ______ I remember the story a little differently so will tell my version. Howard Tullis had some trade that was running out, he appreciated the efforts I had put in at the station and offered me a weekend on the station at Plaza Las Glorias in Puerto Vallarta...and offered Bill the same trip. After I checked in, I went out to a patio bar which had a great view of the ocean, and ordered a margarita. I had left word at the desk, that when Bill checked in to tell him where I was if he wanted to join me for a drink. Great setting..."only in Mexico." About the tapes. I had done some airchecks of KFXM to give to a friend in Mexico. When I was waiting on Bill, the bartender was playing some music that was pretty bad, and I told him I had some tapes up in my room from the states and asked if he would like to play them instead and he said, "sure...bring them down." So, by the time Bill joined me, KFXM was being enjoyed in the Plaza Las Glorias bar, Puerto Vallarta. The timing was perfect. Bill walked in, ordered a drink, took a sip..."If I didn't know better, I would think I was listening to KFXM". "Yeh..it does sound like it doesn't it." Another song played.."Damn, that sounds like KFXM." "Yep..sure does." About that time a car dealer commercial in San Bernardino came on and I thought Bill was going to fall out of his chair. "THAT'S KFXM!!!...that's technically impossible!" "Well you know Bill, the signal could be skipping over the water...it's kind of a clear shot down the coast...." "Yeh...but the distance...it can't be...damn, I wish I had brought my meter reader." He was truly in a state of shock, you could see the wheels were spinning in his brain, you should have seen the look on his face. About that time, KFXM gave the time...it was ironically the same hour but the time given was around the half hour. Bill looked at his watch...It was at the top of the hour. He said, "I know there is a time difference in Mexico, but it doesn't come in half hours!" He jumped up and went over to where the music was coming from..."It's a G--D---tape!!" It was hysterical!! He gave me one of my funniest moments in radio. Helen Jones
ABOUT KFXM, AND SOMETHING YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT HELEN JONES Very interesting note from Helen Jones (CGC #415) re the return of the KFXM call sign. I was Chief Engineer at KFXM/KDUO from 1980 to 1982 when it was still owned by Howard Tullis, one of the most colorful owners I ever worked with. At the time, the three tower directional array was located at the junction of I10 and I15E on a small executive golf course and the studios were located in the Holiday Inn on Fairway Drive. I remember on many occasions going out to do base current readings (our license required them three times a week) and taking my clubs. Since Tullis owned the course, I was able to play for free. Since the towers were on the course and fenced in, I also had an endless supply of golf balls. Great memories. As a matter of fact, KFXM was where I first started reading the CGC Communicator. Bill Hayes Director of Engineering and Technology Iowa Public Television PS As I recall, Helen played one of the greatest practical jokes ever on me. I was on a vacation in Puerto Vallarta and I was unaware that Helen was also there at the same hotel. While sitting in the poolside bar I was listening to the music play over the bar's entertainment system and was surprised it was Top 40 music. I was stunned when the first station break occurred and I heard a DJ that I knew give the KFXM call sign. When I asked the bar tender about it he told me that they listened to the station all the time. I was completely convinced that somehow, KFXM was ducting or skipping from San Bernardino down to central Mexico. It wasn't until I heard the legal ID at 17 minutes after the hour that I wondered what was going on. At that point the bar tender lost it and pointed to Helen sitting over at another table. She was rolling hysterically. It seems that she had brought a couple of cassettes of air checks and had been planning this joke since she found out that I was going to be at the hotel the same time she was. I never was able to get her back for that joke and it is still one of the best practical jokes I have ever seen.
WIRELESS MIKES IN TV BANDS MUST BE LICENSEDHoward Fine's letter addressing wireless mics (see CGC #410) is as follows: In reading the Part 15 rules I see that only Medical telemetry is permitted in unused TV channels without a license. Sec. 15.242: Operation in the bands 174-216 MHz and 470-668 MHz. (a) The marketing and operation of intentional radiators under the provisions of this section is restricted to biomedical telemetry devices employed solely on the premises of health care facilities. This means that all wireless mikes must follow the FCC rules and be licensed. The manufactures are wrong in telling people that they do not need to be licensed. At the recent Democratic Convention we came across wireless mikes that were being used by Internet companies and college students. Neither one of them are permitted under the rules.
CGC sent Howard's letter to John Reed (Senior Engineer, FCC Technical Rules Branch), and John added these helpful observations: ....
Section 15.209(a) prohibits unlicensed (wireless mic) operation on the frequencies allocated to TV broadcasting with few exceptions. Those exceptions are biomedical telemetry devices operating under the provisions of 15.241 or 15.242, radio control transmitters operating under the provisions of Section 15.231(a)-(d) and periodic (less than 1 second) transmitters operating under the provisions of Section 15.231(e). There is also a new provision under Part 95 for biomedical telemetry operation at 608-614 MHz where an individual license is not required. Any other operation on the TV broadcast frequencies (54-72 MHz, 76-88 MHz, 174-216 MHz and 470-806 MHz) requires that a licensed first be obtained from the Commission.
Wireless microphones can be operated without a license, but not on the TV frequencies. These include such products as the "Mister Microphone" type devices operating at 88-108 MHz and the "walkie-talkie" type products at 49.82-49.90 MHz, operating under Sections 15.235 and 15.239. I wouldn't be surprised if some more sophisticated microphones have been developed at 902-928 MHz under Section 15.247 or 15.249 of our rules. The true wireless microphones you find in the marketplace are those that operate under the provisions of Part 90 or Part 74 of our rules. Part 90 microphones operate within the frequency band 169-172 MHz under the provisions of Section 90.265(b). A license is required and the user must meet the eligibility requirements in Part 90, e.g., operation would be industrial, business, public safety, etc.
Subpart H of Part 74 regulates the operation of wireless microphones in the frequency bands shown in Section 74.802. These bands include those allocated to TV broadcasting as well as 26.1-26.48 MHz, 161.625-161.775 MHz, 450-451 MHz, 455-456 MHz and 944-952 MHz. A license is required and the user must meet the eligibility requirements in Section 74.832, e.g., the operator must be a broadcast station or a TV or motion picture producer.
COMMENTS ON JOHN REISER AND HIS RETIREMENT FROM THE FCC
I just read that you are about to retire from the FCC early in September. I could not let the moment pass without my personal profound thanks to you for being "you."
First, your engineering expertise, patience, and common sense at the FCC certainly will be sorely missed.
Second, if there has ever been an "Elmer" at the FCC, you have been that person. For "non-hams" reading this, an "Elmer" within the ranks of amateur radio is a very special kind of mentor. Through traditional teaching, plus leading by example, an "Elmer" makes the varied arts and practices of electronic emissions literally living, breathing friends and allies to his or her lucky students. A really great "Elmer" like John adds a deep dimension of humanity and gentility to it all. The lesson is obvious, but missed by many.
Be a good human being first and foremost, then practice your art measured against the yardstick of your humanity. This is a lesson not taught enough, not learned well and not remembered by many controlling the fate and future of our electronic destinies today. Whenever I think of John I will try to remember that lesson and keep it alive in my actions.
You have been an "Elmer" and friend to many in and out of the Commission. It was one of my singular honors to play a small part in awarding you the richly deserved membership status with the Society of Broadcast Engineers of Fellow. You met every definition of the criteria for that honor, and then some.
Hopefully, for all our sakes, you have infected at least one person at the FCC with your unique approach. I can do no more than wish you happiness at whatever you may pursue in retirement. Hopefully the amateur airwaves as well as the spectrum at large will continue to benefit from your participation.
The only suggestion I could make to the FCC (Bill Kennard please copy) would be to hire John back if he is willing under the job description of "Special FCC Customer Consultant." Enough said.
SBE Past President, 1985-87
(Your letter to John) was well written, well said!
I doubt there's a broadcaster who's been around more than a few years who won't be saddened to see John step down from his informal position of "He Who Runs The Place," especially if that broadcaster still needs help within the FCC...
John, I know you stayed on a lot longer than most would, and, well, can't you hang in a couple more years? Until they get somebody to fill your shoes? Somebody who'll go to Office Depot and buy his own colored copy paper when the government's out of cash, like you've done, so that your reports stay in order? Somebody who'll show up at an SBE convention on his own nickel when the government's out of money again, wearing a badge that says, "John Reiser, Washington, D.C., "Will Work For Food?" It's going to take some time, man, to get your replacement up to speed! You can hang in.... can't cha?
Thanks for everything you've done for the industry, and the country, John. We'll miss you.
Self-Oscillating Preamps - Two Problems Regarding the self-oscillating TV antenna preamps. This has been a problem for many years. When I was with WKYC-TV/3 in Cleveland, the transmitter supervisor, a ham, got to be very good at finding these things with a battery operated receiver with an RF pad on the input. He could have had a full time job running down the problems just in the Cleveland area. The most difficult one to find was in a mobile home park. Being a mobile home park with many metal boxes (homes) in close proximity, it was difficult to find the bad amplifier as the signal was bouncing around the park. Once the self-oscillating preamp was located, we called the antenna/preamp manufacturer about it. They were indifferent then (10 years ago). I asked if they planned to redesign the pre-amp. The answer was, "no, it's not worth that." When a bad preamp comes in, they toss it in the dumpster and give the customer a new one, gratis. Judging from the postings in the CGC Communicator and my personal experience, there are two problems in the preamp department. First, there are the occasional random preamps that go into self-oscillation, VHF or UHF. Then there are those preamps that have so much gain (or poor design) that they are likely to self- oscillate when brand new. It is the latter that pose a major health problem for the electromagnetic spectrum. Jerry Plemmons, K6JRY Systems Engineering Manager Harris Broadcast Systems email@example.com
Comments re Self-Oscillating Recreational Vehicle TV Antenna Preamps My name is Jeff Taylor (KT4OL) here in Chattanooga, TN. As Chuck Roach, (N4WT) has written you, I also have experienced the Winegard TV amplifier problem for RVs. Just this weekend I had the opportunity to see and hear this problem first hand in my own driveway! Family members (unaware of the RF problem), from Minnesota, rented an RV and arrived with the Winegard amplifier on. Sure enough the RFI began as soon as they were near Chattanooga. That obvious roar across the band was all over the airwaves. When they pulled up, I ran and got my HT. I scanned the ham bands and found full scale readings around 443.00 and up to 459.00 MHZ. The signal moved around from frequency to frequency. By the way, Chuck and I have gone on "Fox hunts" looking for these before and have found many amps causing this problem. We went to Mobile home parks and personal residences using RF locating equipment. The owners were kind enough to turn the units off and they were amazed that the mfg. hadn't done something about this on a nation-wide level. I just wanted to let you know that Chuck is not the only person finding this problem. I have experienced it also. I just wonder how many thousands of innocent people have RVs and have no idea that they are causing RF problems for Police, Fire, and other amateur services? Something needs to be done about this. Winegard has tried little steps in solving the issue and has told us that "It is only an isolated problem" in Chattanooga. We all know and are smart enough to know that this is not the case. Mobile homes are mobile and it only makes sense to assume that the amplifier RF problem will be mobile also. We are not trying to harm or slander Winegard. Our purpose is to help reduce the huge TV amplifier problem caused by RVs who use this system. Maybe through our efforts Winegard will be gracious and responsible enough to recall these units and help us reduce the problem or wipe it out completely. I believe Winegard will do the right thing if we kindly and firmly let them know this is not acceptable. Not to mention, it is against the law to let these RF problems occur anyway. Could you help us in this endeavor? Jeff Taylor, KT4OL, firstname.lastname@example.org July 3, 2000 ______ Due to a busy week and the holidays, CGC did not forward a copy of Jeff Taylor's letter (above) to Winegard. However, Winegard did have an opportunity to review Chuck Roach's letter which we published last week. Here, then, is Winegard's response to the UHF-TV preamp RFI issue without the benefit of having seen Mr. Taylor's letter. We sincerely appreciate the fact that both parties have taken this opportunity to express their points of view in writing. Ed. ______ Following is the July 6, 2000 letter to Robert Gonsett @ CGC from Patrick A. Haney, VP/CFO of Winegard Company: We appreciate your inquiry regarding the Winegard RV amplified TV antenna. We are aware that certain information is currently being distributed concerning this product oscillating and radiating signals interfering with certain frequencies. Unfortunately, certain of the information being distributed is not accurate. The facts as we know them follow: 1. We have received isolated inquiries regarding this product possibly oscillating and radiating interfering signal. 2. We have responded to the inquiries and gathered information to help evaluate if a problem exists and when appropriate, the nature of the problem. 3. Over the life of this product which includes millions of units placed in service by Winegard, we have located approximately 50 radiating Winegard antennas. Most recently, we located and replaced approximately 10 Winegard antennas in the Chattanooga, TN area that were found to be radiating. Literally millions of this type antenna have been sold in various configurations by various manufacturers over the last twenty plus years and a very large number of these antennas are in use today. At this time we have found a few Winegard antennas to be oscillating and noted to cause interference in the 450 MHz range. The Winegard Company is a responsible corporate citizen and takes these matters very seriously. We have been and continue to actively investigate and evaluate these and any other matters concerning our products. We have no cause to believe any form of widespread significant problem exists with the Winegard RV amplified TV antenna, or for that matter, any similar product produced by any other manufacturer. Again, we appreciate your interest and the opportunity to discuss these matters with you. Please call if you would like to further discuss these or any other matters. Sincerely, WINEGARD CO.
RFI From Self-Oscillating Recreational Vehicle TV Antenna Preamps (E-mail from N4WT as forwarded by Andy Zorca, WJ9J) Two representatives from Winegard Manufacturing came to Chattanooga Monday 06/19/2000. They came prepared with a spectrum analyzer, Yagi antenna and about 35 replacement antennas, which had been modified for lower (15db) gain. We went to one local R/V dealer and found and replaced eight antenna/amplifiers, which were transmitting from 438 to 483 MHz and drifting up and down the band with spurs in the 900 MHz range. Due to time limitations, I don't think we got them all. We then went to three other locations where we had found the amplifiers getting into our 440 repeaters (one was 11+ miles from my repeater) and replaced those. Winegard has been more than cooperative about coming to Chattanooga and helping find and replace these antennas. The company rep. said the amplifiers were tested at 27db gain at UHF! Chuck Roach, N4WT, email@example.com ______ Comments by Andy, WJ9J: After talking with Chuck, there's some more news ... The replacements worked perfectly with no spurs anywhere. Obviously, they didn't oscillate. Okay, now the bad news. They have manufactured and distributed over four million of these (according to the Winegard Rep) that are 27 dB since 1991. The 11 replaced in Chattanooga has only scratched the surface. We are still finding even more! One of them was so bad, that you could modulate it by tapping on the body of the RV. Anyway, we are still waiting on more information from Winegard and the FCC as to what is going to happen. So, if you are having UHF interference problems, or 800-900 MHz, think about RV dealerships or campgrounds. Andy Zorca, WJ9J ______ (These e-mails were forwarded to CGC by Mike Morris and various engineers at Clear Channel Communications. The letters appear to be authentic. Bob Gonsett has spoken with Chuck Roach, N4WT, and Pat Haney, VP & CFO of Winegard. Pat is considering sending the CGC Communicator a reply expressing Winegard's point of view. We have learned that Ed Hare @ ARRL Headquarters is also aware of the RFI incident, and will be looking into the situation as time allows.)
PLAN TO BAN BROADCASTING FROM SANTIAGO PEAK United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service Cleveland National Forest 10845 Rancho Bernardo Rd., #200 San Diego, CA 92127-2107 (858) 673-6180 CRS 1-800-735-2922 - Voice CRS 1-800-735-2929 - TTY File Code: 1950 Date: March 16, 2000 Dear Interested Party: The Cleveland National Forest is proposing to update the communication site plan for the Santiago Peak communication site, located in Section 29, T.5S., R.6W., S.B.M., Orange and Riverside Counties, California. The Santiago Peak Communication Site Plan was last updated in 1980. The proposed site plan would reflect the Forest Service's intent to continue to manage Santiago Peak communication site solely as a nonbroadcast site. Nonbroadcast use includes common mobile radio, cellular telephone, and private mobile radio, microwave, amateur radio, personal/private receivers, environmental monitoring, passive reflectors, and local exchange networks. Broadcast use includes television, AM and FM radio, cable television, broadcast translators, low power television and low power FM radio. This provision of the updated Santiago Peak Communication Site Plan would not apply to any current uses or pending proposed uses before the updated plan is finalized. Upon completion of the environmental analysis of the proposed management and operational activities for Santiago Peak, the Cleveland National Forest's Land and Resources Management Plan would be amended to designate Santiago Peak as a nonbroadcast site and Modjeska Peak as a broadcast site on the Trabuco Ranger District. The Santiago Peak site plan would address the following: 1) construction requirements for towers, electronic facilities, grounding systems, and fuel tanks; 2) fire and safety requirements for the electronic facilities; 3) visual quality management; 4) future development of the site; 5) road access and sharing of operation and maintenance costs by users of the site; 6) location of and restrictions on support needs, such as power and utility supply corridors, parking, and sanitary requirements; 7) radiation safety and security requirements for protection of facilities and equipment; 8) administrative requirements in the Forest Service's standard communication site lease; 9) the Trabuco Ranger District Electronic Users Association and its relationship with the Forest Service in connection with the agency's management of Santiago Peak; 10) a map delineating the existing improvements; and 11) designation of Modjeska Peak as the site for broadcast use in the Trabuco Ranger District. The Forest Service encourages you to comment on the environmental effects of the elements in the paragraph above. Please send your comments within 30 days from the date of this letter to Cleveland National Forest, Trabuco Ranger District, ATTN: G.G. Pieper, 1147 East 6 Street, Corona CA 92879. We will later request your comments on the environmental analysis and the draft revised Santiago Peak Communication Site Plan. If you need further information, please contact G.G. Pieper, Lands Officer, Trabuco Ranger District, (909) 736-1811. Thank you for your consideration of this matter. Sincerely, ANNE S. FEGE Forest Supervisor Enclosure - Area Map
ANTI-AIRCRAFT GUNS AT KHJ - 1940s (Part of a letter from Marvin Collins to Jerry Lewine re the early days of KHJ(AM), Los Angeles) I remember the early days of the KHJ present transmitter site. I can remember being a young kid about 1942 or 1943 when I had a cousin, Jim Wilson in the U.S. Army, stationed at the KHJ transmitter for guard duty. One day we visited cousin Jim while he was on guard duty at KHJ. I remember out in the fields near the towers were trailer mounted search lights, trailer mounted anti-aircraft guns and trailer mounted "big ear" listening devices. When there was an enemy aircraft alert a soldier would put on ear phones and listen with the big ears pointed in the sky to try and locate the plane. He was located on the big ear trailer and had controls for azimuth and elevation to aim the big ears at the suspect aircraft. I was too young to know about stereo but I bet those big ears were a stereo system. A synchro system made the searchlights and anti aircraft guns track the aim of the big ears. This was in the days before radar. I remember playing with the big ear controls and watching the searchlights (not turned on) and the antiaircraft guns (probably not armed) follow my commands. I also remember the big army chow truck that arrived in the evening to feed the guards. I remember joining my cousin in the chow line behind the truck and being handed a metal plate of food like the rest of the guards. Fun stuff for a kid still in grammar school. Somewhere in my picture collection I remember an old photo taken with myself, my mother and my cousin and in the background is the KHJ building with the old vertical KHJ sign showing on the front of the building. I have no personal recollection of guards being stationed at KFI but from talking to some of the retirees I have heard that Army guards were posted at the KFI transmitter too during World War II. There is a patched spot on the ceiling of the shop at the KFI transmitter that I was told was a bullet hole made when a guard accidentally discharged his rifle in the shop.... Marvin Collins, Chief Engineer, KFI-KOST
COURT OF APPEALS UPHOLDS FCC'S PREEMPTION OVER RFI The United States Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit upheld FCC preemption of RFI issues. It happened in Kansas. Newslines Cathy Gilliland, KB0FDU, reports: It is a legal decision that could have wide repercussions anyplace that a state, city or municipality tries to control radio frequency signals. And, it happened out here in Johnson County Kansas. Thats where the County Board of Commissioners decided that a communications tower owned by Southwestern Bell Telephone was causing interference to public safety communications. The county then passed some laws and ordered the site to be shut down. Southwestern Bell refused and took the matter into court. The telecommunications giant asked the court to nullify countys rules. It also obtained a declaratory ruling that the regulation was preempted by federal law. But it was not over yet. The county appealed the judges decision to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. But to Johnson Countys surprise, that court held that Congress intended the F-C-C and only the F-C-C to have exclusive jurisdiction over radio frequency interference matters. It went on to say that based on the concept of federal preemption in communications matters, that there exists no room for local regulation of radio frequency radiation by Johnson County and -- by inference -- any other non federal jurisdiction. Whether or not Johnson County will appeal the issue of the tower to the United States Supreme court is not known as we go to air. And what does this mean for hams? We will have to wait to see if this becomes what is known as a published decision. Thats one that sets legal precedent nationwide. If it is, then it could also be the basis for hams to use to obtain reasonable antenna accommodations such as dipoles and verticals when a city or county says no. >From the end of the Yellow Brick Road in Hiawatha Kansas, Im Cathy Gilliland, KB0FDU reporting for Newsline. (Story from amateur radio Newsline report number 1174 with a release date of Friday, February 11th, 2000.
ORDER ON RECONSIDERATION OF 99-393: FCC ELECTS TO BYPASS A SENSITIVE RELIGIOUS ISSUE Thank you so much for your great service, THE CGC COMMUNICATOR. You are correct that RM-2493 died several years ago. At first the rumor was on paper. It now has a new home on the internet. Religious broadcasters have been trying to kill this one for several years. Now the FCC has caused more potential confusion with Order 99-393 from earlier this year. 99-393 has to do with a proposed move of a Pittsburgh station from a commercial channel to an educational channel. The FCC order specifically mentions certain types of religious programming, including church services, that they say do not qualify as educational programming. The text of 99-393 is at: http://www.fcc.gov/Bureaus/Mass_Media/Orders/1999/fcc99393.txt The FCC says in their posting about the RM-2493 rumor "The Commission explained then that it is required by the First Amendment 'to observe a stance of neutrality toward religion, acting neither to promote nor to inhibit religion." It also explained that it must treat religious and secular organizations alike in determining their eligibility for broadcasting channels." With 99-393 it looked as if they had changed that position. They appeared to be concerned about religious content. Well, news travels fast these days. Representative Mike Oxley (R-OH) sponsored legislation to reverse the FCC decision. Many people wrote and called the FCC to express their concern about 99-393. The FCC took notice. On Friday 1/28/00 they vacated their position. For the official text, see: http://www.fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/2000/db0128/fcc00025.txt A one page fact sheet is on-line at: http://www.fcc.gov/Bureaus/Mass_Media/Factsheets/128-fact.html Maybe the mail arriving at the FCC about the RM-2493 rumor was beginning to slow and they needed a way to pick it up again. Well, I think they found an excellent way to keep people confused. The bottom line should anybody ask you is that, yes, there was some recent activity at the FCC regarding religious TV broadcasting that had some people concerned. The recent activity had nothing to do with RM-2493 or with Madalyn Murray O'Hair. And, no change is currently in effect at the FCC regarding religious broadcasting. Jon Foreman Good News Radio® KSGN(FM) Keep Sharing the Good News http://www.goodnewsradio.com
RM-2493: ANOTHER INTERNET RUMOR DISPELLED
RM-2493 died a peaceful death about 25 years ago. An FCC staff member takes this opportunity to explain:
A rumor has been circulating since 1975 that Madalyn Murray O'Hair, a widely known, self-proclaimed atheist, proposed that the FCC consider limiting or banning religious programming. This rumor is not true. It also has been circulated repeatedly that Ms. O'Hair was granted an FCC hearing to discuss that proposal. This too is untrue.
There is no federal law or regulation that gives the FCC the authority to prohibit radio and television stations from presenting religious programs. Actually, the Communications Act (the law that established the FCC and defines its authority) prohibits the FCC from censoring broadcast material and interfering with freedom of speech in broadcasting.
The FCC cannot direct any broadcaster to present, or refrain from presenting, announcements or programs on religion, and the FCC cannot act as an arbitrator on the insights or accuracy of such material. Broadcasters, not the FCC, nor any other governmental agency, have the responsibility for selecting the programming that is aired by their stations.
A petition filed in December 1974 by Jeremy D. Lansman and Lorenzo W. Milam which was routinely assigned the number RM-2493 added further confusion regarding the issue of religious programming. They had asked, among other things, that the FCC inquire into operating practices of stations licensed to religious organizations.
The petitioners had also asked that no new licenses be granted for any new noncommercial educational broadcasting station, until the requested inquiry had been completed. The "Lansman-Milam petition" was DENIED by the FCC on August 1, 1975. The Commission explained then that it is required by the First Amendment "to observe a stance of neutrality toward religion, acting neither to promote nor to inhibit religion." It also explained that it must treat religious and secular organizations alike in determining their eligibility for broadcasting channels.
Periodically since 1975, the FCC has received mail indicating that, in many parts of the country, there were rumors claiming the petitions of RM-2493 had called for an end to religious programs on radio and television. Such rumors are false.
Additional mail and telephone calls came in from people who thought that Ms. O'Hair was a sponsor of RM-2493. This rumor is also false.
You may visit our website at http://www.fcc.gov/releases.html to view FCC rulemakings.
CHIEF ENGINEER OPENING AT KROQ(FM), LOS ANGELES KROQ has an opening for a full time Chief Engineer. This position will report to the on-site DOE/Eng Mgr. Applicant must have at least 5 years broadcast experience. We are looking for someone with strong technical and personal skills as you will be dealing with a fairly young and energetic staff. Experience with 5KW BE FM transmitters is very helpful. Studio background is necessary. Design and construction background is helpful as a move is planned within the 18 months. Computer skills are a must, both desktop (Windows 95/98) and server (NT), and knowledge of commonly used radio software. Audiovault as well as ISDN and Remote Broadcast experience will give you an edge. SBE Certification or FCC First Class (or General) license preferred. Infinity Broadcasting offers many benefits such as Medical, 401-K, etc. NO CALLS PLEASE. E-Mail or FAX resumes to Scott Mason: firstname.lastname@example.org or 818-841-5903. Infinity is an EOE M/F.
UCTV BEGINS BROADCASTING ON ECHOSTAR CHANNEL 9412 (Text received at CGC on January 14, 2000) The University of California announced today that it has launched its own public interest television channel (UCTV) capable of reaching more than 3 million viewers on prime time television seven days a week throughout North America. This is an important milestone for the University of California, said UC President Richard C. Atkinson, a prime proponent of inviting the public to find out more about UC through new electronic media. Chancellors of the ten UC campuses share my excitement over this new opportunity to serve California and the nation. In an era of 90-second news stories, there is a real need for in-depth coverage of ideas and issues that affect the lives of people everywhere, he said. The channel is available on EchoStars Dish Network satellite television service. UCTV is broadcast on channel 9412 and is available to viewers with a satellite dish antenna pointed at 119 degrees West Longitude. The charter of the program is to use the resources of UC to inform, educate and enrich the lives of viewers throughout the nation. The channel will broadcast faculty lectures, interviews, research symposia, distinguished speakers and artistic performances 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It was a major accomplishment to get this program up and working under a tight deadline. We look forward to working on the quality of the broadcasts so that viewers will turn to our channel first for in-depth information, said Julius Zelmanowitz, UC interim vice provost of academic initiatives, who helped prepare and submit the UC proposal to EchoStar. Zelmanowitz said that UCTV will allow UC faculty to share the results of their scholarship and cutting-edge research directly with the public across a broad range of subject areas. The UC channel schedules blocks of time both for thematic subjects (science, technology, health, arts, public affairs and humanities, for example) and for individual campuses. Programs are broken into two four-hour blocks for an eight-hour total during East Coast prime time, 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. In the short term, a bulletin board with pertinent UC facts and information will fill remaining time. The programs airing on UCTV also will be broadcast live on the Internet at <http://www.uctvonline.org/>. Current programs include a discussion of global change by UC Irvine's Nobel laureate F. Sherwood Rowland, a gamelan ensemble concert from UC Riverside, a film historian's research from UC San Diego on all-black westerns, and a UCLA professors study of sabertooth cats. UCTV will build on the success of a broadcast channel developed by the University of California at San Diego seven years ago. Today, UCSD-TV (Channel 35) serves one million homes in San Diego and provides programming to other stations around the country, including stations in New York City, Seattle, Palo Alto and Washington, D.C. UCSD has long supported the use of broadcast programming to give the general public access to knowledge, ideas and entertainment from both the campus and the local community, said its chancellor, Robert C. Dynes. The success and value of UCSD-TV, now in its seventh year, is the model for UCTV and we are pleased to play a key role in the development of unique and innovative broadcast capabilities for the UC system. It is expected that UCTV, like UCSD-TV, will focus on UC activities, but also will develop programs through partnerships with community organizations. Currently, UCSD-TV partners with the San Diego City Club, the San Diego Union-Tribune, Natural History Museum, San Diego Opera, Old Globe Theatre and many other organizations. UCTV will expand the model around the state. UCTV will help us meet our commitment to improve K-12 education. UC programs can help K-12 teachers in their classroom work and in staying up-to-date on the newest developments in their disciplines. And in the near future, students and their parents may only have to turn to our channel to get information on admissions and course requirements for access to college, said Atkinson. The UCTV channel enables EchoStar to meet its obligation to set aside four percent of its airtime for public interest education programming, under Federal Communications Commission rules based on the 1992 Federal Cable Act. Sherman George, Director, UCSD Media Center (858) 534-4533
NEAR DISASTERS AT KVYY & KLYY Y2K may have come and gone with little or no fanfare but December 99 was a month filled with near disasters. On the 10th it was discovered that someone had hit one of the guy wires on our Ventura tower. The tower was leaning badly and was in danger of coming down. The people at Western Technical Services came to our rescue arranging for a crew and a crane to perform repairs to the tower on the following Tuesday. The job was done correctly and quickly with much professionalism. A big thanks to Duane Carter and the rest of the crew at Western Technical Services. If that wasn't enough, our Arcadia transmitter site was caught in the middle of the Angeles National Forest fire that occurred the week after Christmas. Thanks to the hard work of the LA County Fire Department and the assisting departments as well as the Forest Service, our site was saved from any serious damage. (The fire burned within a few inches of our propane tank for the emergency generator.) During the time off the air at the main site, the fine people at KCAL-TV loaned us rack space and assisted in hanging a single Scala Yagi on their tower to cover our city of license, Arcadia, under an STA, during the fire. An extra thanks to the KCAL Transmitter Supervisor Doug Sauby for loaning us his ISDN line for program delivery to their site. Also thanks to Ray Mascho of KCBS-TV for assisting in the installation. We were back broadcasting full time and full power from our main site on Saturday, January 1st, 2000. Kent Kramer, Engineering Manager KLYY, Arcadia; KVYY, Ventura; KSYY, Fallbrook email@example.com
LOS ANGELES RADIO JAMMER NABBED On Dec 28, 1999, Jack Gerritsen, a resident of the city of Bell was arrested by the CHP. CHP officials had been investigating occurrences of someone illegally interfering with radio communications of the CHP, other law enforcement agencies, private business as well as various media outlets. A surveillance was conducted by the CHP with the assistance of the LA field office of the FCC "nabbing" the suspect in the act of illegally transmitting on a local law enforcement radio frequency. Mr. Gerritsen was arrested and booked at the Bell PD for 636.5 PC - Prohibited interception of Police radio communications and 148 (a) (2) PC - Interference with Police radio communications. The CHP believe Gerritsen has been illegally interfered and transmitted on police frequencies on over 100 occasions. Local TV stations also had this occur well over 100 times. (This text was provided to CGC by Howard Fine. A local FCC agent identified the text as a copy of an official CHP Press Release. The FCC is expected to issue its own news release soon. -Ed.)