West Virginia Agency Receives 6-Month Narrowbanding Waiver (6/16/14)
Monday, June 16, 2014 | Comments

The FCC waived the narrowbanding requirement for six months for Belington Emergency Squad, West Virginia, to enable Belington to obtain “quiet zone” approval.

The commission’s VHF/UHF narrowbanding deadline required VHF and UHF private land mobile radio (PLMR) licensees to operate using channel bandwidth of no more than 12.5 kilohertz or equivalent efficiency by Jan. 1, 2013.

In 2013, the FCC dismissed a Belington modification application to narrowband the channels licensed under station call sign KNJB861 from 25 kilohertz to 12.5 kilohertz because it lacked quiet zone approval.

The quiet zone, which encompasses an area of about 13,000 square miles, was created to minimize possible harmful interference to the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), located at Green Bank, West Virginia, and the Naval Radio Research Observatory (NRRO), located at Sugar Grove, West Virginia. The FCC rules require that the NRAO be notified of any proposed construction and operation of a new or modified station at a permanent fixed location within the quiet zone.

The quite zone administrator said the effective radiated power (ERP) of the Belington facility should be reduced to 17 watts. The FCC granted Belington a limited waiver of the narrowbanding mandate so that it may pursue the matter further with the administrator.

The FCC required Belington to contact the quiet zone administrator within 15 days and granted Belington a six-month waiver of the narrowband mandate until Dec. 17. The administrator’s response, and any reply submitted by Belington, will be taken into account by the FCC and appropriate action taken, the commission said.

The full letter is here.

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