On May 23, the US House version of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that included the language of the Amateur Radio Parity Act (HR 555) cleared the House. The following day, a fiscal year 2019 Financial Services appropriations bill also containing Parity Act language cleared the Financial Services and General Government subcommittee of the House Committee on Appropriations and now is working its way through the full Appropriations Committee. As a result, the Parity Bill has attracted some attention from outside the Amateur Radio and homeowners association communities.
ARRL Hudson Division Director Mike Lisenco, N2YBB, who chairs the ARRL Board’s Ad Hoc Legislative Advocacy Committee, called attention to a recent Politico article that addresses the challenges the bill faces.
On May 25, Politico reported, “Lawmakers are making a multi-pronged push to drive the bipartisan Amateur Radio Parity Act through Congress and finally bypass objections from top Senate Commerce [Committee] Democrat Bill Nelson of Florida, whose allegiance to his state’s homeowners’ associations drove his panel to yank the bill from consideration last fall. The legislation, H.R. 555, would direct the FCC to let Amateur Radio operators get around private rules, like those imposed by some HOAs, that keep them from putting up radio antennas.”