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FCC Allows Indiana Department to Use Vehicular Repeater at VHF (7/20/12)
The FCC granted a Wayne County (Ind.) Sheriff Department request for waiver seeking authorization to use frequency 173.210 MHz for analog voice operations. Specifically, the department requested a waiver of Section 90.20(d)(54) of the FCC’s rules to operate at 20-kilohertz bandwidth on frequency 173.210 MHz, which has a bandwidth limitation of 3 kilohertz and is not available for analog voice operations.

The request is subject to certain conditions and the commission is holding the application in abeyance for up to 60 days pending an amendment.

Specifically, the department seeks to license synthesized vehicular repeater (SVR) equipment manufactured by Pyramid Communications for use on 173.210 MHz with an effective radiated power (ERP) of 1 watt. The request is for a frequency in the 173.2 – 173.4 MHz band rather than in the 150 ¬¬– 160 MHz band on the grounds that “interference … can occur between the mobile radio and SVR operating within the same VHF band.”

The FCC placed the department’s request on public notice in 2009.

The FCC granted the waiver request with the following conditions:

• Operation on frequency 173.210 MHz is on a secondary, non-interfering basis to all primary stations on frequencies 173.20375, 173.21 and 173.225 MHz that are authorized as of the initial grant date of this station.

• Beginning Jan. 1, 2013, this station must operate on channels with a bandwidth of 12.5 kilohertz or less, or with equivalent efficiency, regardless of the emission bandwidths set forth on this license.

In addition, the commission instructed the agency to file an application amendment within 60 days to change the mobile area of operation to countywide, and to specify the quantity of vehicular repeaters with the MO3 station class code.

“We will hold the application in abeyance for 60 days after the release date of this order to allow the department to file such an application amendment,” the order said.

The order is available here.

Last year, the FCC requested input on whether to initiate a rulemaking proceeding to consider Pyramid Communications’ recommended rule changes and other rule changes that would be necessary to facilitate the use of vehicular repeater systems by public-safety licensees in the VHF band. Pyramid filed the request in 2010 and supplied additional information in 2011.

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