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Final Comments - WIA LCD Submission to the ACMA  - $0 Listing ID: 14248



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Listing Began: Jun 14 20:28
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Seller's Comments and Description:

G’day… I’ve just completed the WIA Survey regarding the draft Licence Conditions Determination submission to the ACMA.

A lot of hard work by the WIA has gone into that and I have to admit that, as an Advanced Amateur Licence Holder, I’m disappointed that the WIA has had to frame these recommendations based on the input of so few Amateurs, given the number of current Members of the Wireless Institute of Australia and the number of Australian Amateurs overall.

In particular, I feel that 460 odd survey contributions to these matters makes it hard for the WIA to convince the ACMA that they are operating in the best interests of all Australian Amateurs.

The final comments for the Licence Conditions Determination submission are currently available to view on the WIA’s website at wia.org.au. Click on News and Events, go to News Releases and look for the Final Comments – WIA LCD Submission heading.

The WIA is calling for final input from you, WIA Member or not in a survey. Here’s a chance to really make a positive difference to our hobby. Wouldn’t it be nice to have thousands of final comments from Australian Amateurs, not just a few hundred as has happened previously.

So come on, go to it! You only have until the 30th June.

My comments here are not in the role of any position holder within the WIA but as a concerned individual. I am a member of the WIA, Amateur Radio Victoria and the Ballarat Amateur Radio Group. I support the need for change as outlined in the submission. You should too.

I’m Robert… VK3ARM

HERE'S A REPLY THAT I RECEIVED FROM CHRIS VK4YE:

It is somewhat of a novelty it would seem that the Board of the WIA is finally doing what the membership has expected of it - namely to get on with the business of advocating to ACMA on behalf of all Amateurs in Australia. The paranoia publicly aired over attempts to rid the Institute of members Allan Meredith and Andrew Smith for allegedly holding and airing views contrary to those considered palatable by the Board has been an embarrassment to all fair minded members.

You raised the point that the WIA submission has been compiled from a relatively limited number of respondents to the Board survey. I do not find that surprising. Yes, I contributed, and I am presently in the process of commenting positively on the submission as well as adding additional facts that the Board may find useful. Around 30% of Australia's Amateurs belong to the WIA, but seen in perspective, that is not so bad when RSGB & ARRL memberships languish at around the 25% mark. Probably what is important is the advocacy role played by the Institute for all licencees, rather than dwelling on representing the views of a minority of the Amateur cohort. I believe the WIA and ACMA have a professional relationship that has endured over past decades, and the question of representation has never been publicly aired (if indeed it has ever been raised in private). The RASA (I am also a member of that group as well as the ARRL) has also met with ACMA. The discussions by RASA pretty well parallel those of the WIA, so in that context, both organisations would seem to be on the same page insofar as ACMA is concerned. It is all rather like the politics of the Liberal Party and National Party - no one party's philosophy suits all of a conservative leaning, but taken together, mostly they are pulling in the same direction.

As a general comment, it would be absolutely wonderful to see ACMA take on board the recommendations in the WIA submission as many are clearly warranted. Some components in the wish list will have great difficulty in passing muster. For example, an allocation in the 4 metre band would be very unlikely to be agreed to, as would extending the 80m band to 4MHz. Revised power limits should have good prospects of being accepted, particularly where in the case of 1kW Px for the Advanced Licence, the WIA has offered to reduce the regulatory workload by conducting an application and validation process on behalf of ACMA and then make a recommendation to ACMA to have a licence endorsed for high power operation.

I was a participant in the 1kW trial and had my station assessed as being compliant by ACMA. A letter acknowledging this was followed within one week of a disbandment of the trial allegedly because "some Advanced Licencees' knowledge and awareness of the requirements of the Apparatus Licence LCD did not meet ACMA expectations". Apparently some 17 licencees out of a desk audit of 90 failed to correctly assess their station's compliance. Failing a whole class of students because some has not reached a passing grade defies logic, but that is how ACMA works! The stated reasons for discontinuing the trial probably pointed to an ingrained attitude of not wanting to change the status quo. It seemed to me that the outcome was a fait accompli with a charade to superficially lull the WIA and members into thinking ACMA was being genuinely open and honest in the matter.

The next big issue in the format for assessing candidates for each licence grade. I shall be making a submission on that as well.


Cheers,

Chris Bourke
VK4YE





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