Is Frequency coordination required?
No. Participation in a frequency coordination program is strictly voluntary. No Amateur Radio frequency coordinator has any “authority” to tell a repeater sponsor what he can, or cannot, do.
However, the FCC has recognized that participation in a frequency coordination program by repeater sponsors is in the best interests of all Amateurs. Therefore, FCC rules have been adopted which state that the sponsor of an un-coordinated repeater bears the primary responsibility for curing any interference between his repeater and another repeater which is coordinated. Likewise, the sponsor of an un-coordinated machine cannot expect much help from his area FC.
What kind of problems do frequency coordinators have?
Nowadays there are probably 2 main problem areas:
- First are problems created by the few un-coordinated machines which pop up from time to time.
- Second, are problems caused by the misuse of frequencies. Using frequencies in ways that are contrary to the band plan can lead to problems and general turmoil on the band.
In many areas frequency coordinators have set aside specific frequency pairs for temporary, portable, or emergency repeater operations. These frequencies should be considered first when setting up a temporary operation such as a parade or other public event, an emergency operation or a short-term experiment.
‘There is unfortunately, a small number of uninformed operators who abuse cross-band repeater capabilities causing unintentional, sometimes even malicious, interference. Other problems are caused when the FC is not apprised of changes to existing repeaters, changes of sponsor’s mailing address, etc.
How can a frequency coordination be cancelled?
There are two primary reasons for cancellation of a coordination:
- If a proposed new repeater never gets on the air or if an existing repeater goes off the air, the coordination may be subject to cancellation after a limited amount of time (not in operation after 6 months or more from date of test coordination)
- If any of the primary parameters which affect a repeater’s coverage area are changed by the sponsor, the coordination can be voided. For instance if it gets moved to a different location, of if the antenna height or transmitter power are changed, the changes would affect the coverage area, possibly creating new interference problems fot the repeater’s neighbors.