Tuesday, January 12, 2021

FCC Scales Back Proposed Application Fee for Hams


The FCC has dialed back its proposed $50 fee for most amateur radio license appli- cations to $35, in response to objections by the ARRL and others that the proposed fee was out of line with the cost of processing amateur applications. According to the ARRL, the final Report and Order imposes a $35-per-application fee for new and upgraded licenses, license renewals and vanity call sign applications, as well as the less-commonly filed requests for special temporary authority or rule waivers. There will be no fee for purely administrative updates, such as changes to mailing or e-mail addresses. The effective date of the application fees had not been set as of press time.

However, a June 29 effective date has been set for the FCC's previously-announced requirement that all applications must include an e-mail address or risk being dismissed as "defective." The ARRL says those unwilling or unable to provide an email address must request a rule waiver from the FCC (subject to the new $35 fee) but notes that the Commission is not required to grant the request. Hams may log into the FCC's Universal Licensing System (ULS) License Manager System using their FRN and password to enter or update their email address.