Thanks to all that supported ARSET.

Sam, wm4t

FROM: ********************** The ARRL Letter Vol. 23, No. 41 October 15, 2004 ******************** ==>SOUTHEASTERN REPEATER ASSOCIATION RESCINDS CONTROVERSIAL REPEATER TONE POLICY The Southeastern Repeater Association (SERA) Board of Directors has rescinded a controversial policy that would have amended SERA's coordination policy and guidelines to require CTCSS or DCS receive and transmit tones on all new FM voice repeaters. Existing voice repeaters would have had to comply by July 1, 2006. The Board adopted the "all tone, all the time" policy during its summer meeting in June. SERA President Roger Gregory, W4RWG, said the SERA Board repealed the policy "after much discussion" on October 4. "We may revisit this issue at a later date, but with input from the membership," Gregory told ARRL. He said that while SERA received many positive comments as well as negative ones, complaints from repeater owners prompted the Board's change of heart on the tone policy. "Some [repeaters] had been untoned for years without any interference issues," he said. "They did not wish to tone. North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee seemed to have more concerned repeater owners." The largest Amateur Radio repeater coordinating body in the US, SERA provides voluntary frequency coordination for repeaters in Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi and parts of Virginia and West Virginia. In a letter on the SERA Web site , Gregory called the tone requirement "just another tool we thought was needed to help us to continue to do our job." He noted that SERA has been requiring tones on 10-meter, 6-meter and 70-cm repeaters "for years." Some of those upset with SERA's June decision to require tones tried to get the FCC involved. The Amateur Repeater Society of East Tennessee (ARSET) , which sprang up because of the controversy, wanted the FCC to recognize it as the official coordinating body for eastern Tennessee. FCC Special Counsel for Enforcement Riley Hollingsworth said the Commission does not recognize or certify specific coordinators in the Amateur Service, as it does in the Land Mobile services, and had no plans to get involved in the SERA controversy. But he said requiring tones is a good idea. "From a spectrum efficiency standpoint, tones will be the wave of the future and have been in regular use in the Land Mobile services for decades," said Hollingsworth, who oversees Land Mobile as well as Amateur Radio Service enforcement. He said if tones will cure an interference case in the Land Mobile services, he tells the parties to implement them. "It is surprising that tone systems are not used more in the Amateur Service, a service we expect to be on the leading edge of technology instead of being wedded to old ways of doing things," Hollingsworth added. "As for tones, it's only a matter of time, just as it was with transistors and integrated circuits."

October 11, 2004

NO News from SERA. All has been quiet and so far I have heard nothing from SERA officially. We continue to add repeaters to our group and getting emails from across the state about this issue. Some are asking how SERA got into Tn in the beginning, vote? The latest news that seems confusing is the Tn SERA director now has indicated that he will stay on as the SERA director unless someone runs against him and I assume gets more votes and stays in the race? I have the email that he said he would not continue but he says now he will. Here is what he emailed me a couple weeks ago when I posted he was not running again. I asked "will you get on the ballot after all this?" "I may take a pass on it though given circumstances". So that is where that stands now.

October 1, 2004

I have information that SERA is now! Considering reversing itself on the mandatory tone policy. More on this as it is known and I have not received any information from the SERA president one way or other on this latest news, but I do welcome it so I can share it with all the repeater community. Nothing has been posted on the SERA website since this issue began to notify the amateur community either way, but I will advise immediately here on this website as soon as I know. Also whether SERA will open up more to the repeater community and allow more access of information and input into the coordination process from all repeater owners, not limited only to SERA members is still unknown!

September 22, 2004

I have regrettably learned that Andy Masters, NU5O the Tennessee SERA director has indicated that he will not serve as the Tennessee SERA director the next term when his term expires this year. I have the utmost phrase for his courage to standup and hold his position of support for the repeater operators in Tennessee and he has done everything possible to settle this situation. Andy has proposed to the Board of Directors to rescind this policy on mandatory tones, allow more input from all repeater owners and issue an apology to the Amateur community. This motion so far as I know was defeated by the SERA board of directors. I personally think the actions taken by SERA board members and the actions, that they are still standing by despite pleas from Andy, other board members and repeater operators that they are supposedly serving has gone beyond help now and will not be forgotten. There have been no official response from the SERA president or it's board on this very import and hot topic. I am sure they will blast ARSET for it's efforts to try to support the repeater operators as a group. I don't expect anything less based on the responses I have already gotten. To Andy Masters, NU5O, I say thanks from all the repeaters operators in Tennessee.

Sam Snyder, wm4t ARSET

Andy Master NU5O the Tennessee SERA director has made his comments public on QRZ.COM discussion group. Now it's time for other SERA board members to come public and explain. QRZ Discussion Group

September 18, 2004

(SERA) Southeastern Repeater Association State Director for Tennessee posted his views on QRZ.COM. Andy, NU5O has made it perfectly clear he does not agree with this tone policy and has submitted motions in special sessions to have it rescinded only to have it defeated by other board members. Andy says he will NOT enforce the tone policy in Tennessee. I will comment more after his posting on QRZ is public which should be anytime.

September 17, 2004

While SERA, the Southeastern Repeater Association, the official frequency coordinator for amateur radio repeaters in Tennessee are trying to decide what or how to amend the issue they created concerning the mandatory tone issue, it has been affirmed that no specific group is recognized as a frequency coordinator. Thus, ARSET, Amateur Repeater Society of East Tennessee will take the role to reinforce and affirm the coordinated statuses of repeaters that have signed onto ARSET and that have already been coordinated, with 97% of all repeaters approval in the upper East Tennessee area and the remaining repeater operators are to join later. I have been in contact almost daily with SERA officials trying to resolve this and other issues. I have expressed very strongly that a breakup of SERA will be their own demise. They can resolve this and let the amateur community be heard, but that is their choice now. I and many other hams and repeater operators are still waiting for an official statement from SERA on their website or QRZ.COM discussion group where two SERA officials have posted their personal views already. We are waiting and more news will be posted here as I receive it. Again I have appealed to SERA and hope this can be resolved.

Sam Snyder, wm4t ARSET