Spectrum Preservation Advocacy – Highlight of Spring Board Meeting

EWA’s Board of Directors convened its 2013 Spring Board of Directors meeting this past week in La Quinta, California. Discussions concerning advocacy efforts focused on EWA’s efforts to preserve spectrum allocated for industrial/business (I/B) uses with specific attention on the continuing T-Band reallocation nightmare and increased incidences of public safety licensees securing waivers to use I/B spectrum under the premise that there is no public safety spectrum available in certain geographic areas.

The Board acknowledged that the public safety frequency selection process is designed to promote exclusivity on shared channels, which can artificially promote the argument that there is no public safety spectrum available. Further damaging the I/B sector are I/B frequency advisory committees that seem content to concur with public safety interservice sharing requests without conducting appropriate verification. As a result, EWA may soon reinstitute its frequency coordination verification software to independently verify the technical accuracy of every single public safety application that seeks concurrence to use an I/B frequency. This automated process will verify statements that there is insufficient or no public safety channels available, and that I/B coordination and concurrence process were performed correctly in accordance with FCC rules and industry consensus agreements. In a recent case, the FCC amazingly relied on a statement from an I/B coordinator that it would be fine to grant numerous public safety applications as they would “not create an inadequate supply of Industrial/Business channels ... in the relevant geographic areas.”  There did not appear to be any substantive analyses provided by the coordinator supporting that assertion - so much for representing the interests of I/B licensees.

The Board also reviewed new membership service, communications and operational programs that EWA will launch later in 2013.  Gordon Day, Day Wireless, Milwaukie, Oregon, was also elected to serve on EWA’s Executive Committee.