Topics

California ends Amateur radio Support

Chris Robinson KF6NFW DMR ID 3153250
 

About 2 hrs ago, a post started to hit the amateur radio community that states California has ended all of its amateur radio relationships.

I strongly suspect this to be false, but I am more than curious about this now. Does anyone have any sources to the verasity of claim?

K6UDA has made this video and posted very publicly stating that the Gov of California has fired all ARES/RACES and other amateur groups that work with state.

 

I find this a bit of an alarmist, and probably crying wolf, but does anyone have any idea what this guy is talking about.

 

His video has been posted on reddit and various other amateur related groups already this morning. a group I belong to as well in Midwest has started to come unglued over this thinking and crying the sky is falling!

 

anyone??

 

Chris Robinson

KF6NFW

Alan Thompson
 

All I've seen so far is that there is a pending issue with Cal Fire sending a letter out to some Ham Radio Clubs stating that they will now need to pay for their co-located repeaters, with a ridiculous initial price tag of $7,500 plus monthly space rental: 

Here is the text of the email from CalFire, sent to me by Tom Twist of the Shingletown FSC:

 

Communications Received by Repeater Owner from Lorina Pisi, T&V Manager at Cal Fire.

“Hello [name deleted]:
I do understand and appreciate all of the service you have provided in the past. However, with
constantly changing technological advances, there is no longer the same benefit to State as
previously provided. Therefore, the Department no longer financially supports HAM operators
radios or tenancy. If you desire to enter into a formal agreement to operate and maintain said
equipment, you must complete and submit attached collocation application along with fee as
outlined on page one of application.

There is cost associated with getting an agreement in place. In addition to the technical
analysis fee ($2500/application), there is DGS Lease admin cost associated (typically between
$3000-$5000) with preparation of lease. Also, there will be an annual rent charge based upon
equipment type/space.

Please let me know how you wish to proceed. If you determine the cost is too great to proceed,
please make arrangements with me to remove equipment. If you still have questions, please do
not hesitate to ask. I am much more readily available via email.

Lorina Pisi
T&V Manager
CAL FIRE
Technical Services - Lands
P.O. Box 944246
Sacramento, CA 94244-2460
or
PLEASE NOTE NEW PHYSICAL ADDRESS EFFECTIVE 8/5/19
1131 S Street
Sacramento, CA 95811-6524
916-327-8492
916-324-3400 (fax) Exhibit         
--

I recommended they get the ARRL involved as soon as possible. Given the fire danger in California, this is unbelievable.

Alan Thompson -  W6WN

Alan Thompson
 

Our convo about this:

-------- Forwarded Message --------
Subject: Re: Community Radio
Date: Sun, 29 Sep 2019 21:58:01 -0700
From: Tom Twist <FireSafe@...>
To: Alan Thompson - W6WN <alan@...>


Yes, it is part of our county's emergency plan.  The sheriff can and will comment that it is an important part of our communications and will ask that it be retained.  Our repeater sites have not yet been targeted for removal, as far as I know.

-t

On 9/29/2019 9:14 PM, Alan Thompson - W6WN wrote:

WoW!

Tom, that's cold and a real drag.

Weren't there some recent, official recognitions by FEMA/others about the important role of Ham Radio?

http://www.arrl.org/news/states-counties-municipalities-recognize-amateur-radio-s-contributions-in-advance-of-field-day

What happened to Cal Fire's Volunteers In Prevention Programs?

https://www.fire.ca.gov/programs/communications/volunteers-in-prevention/

Notify the ARRL and the Section Manager about this. This should be right in their wheelhouse.

Find out who is this person's boss...

Best Regards,

Alan - W6WN

Chris Robinson KF6NFW DMR ID 3153250
 

Thank you Alan.

 

I was fairly confident this was closer to truth. Thank you for sharing this information with us.
Radio groups across country are hearing about this through K6UDA video post and are certainly running with the craziness!

 

Chris Robinson

KF6NFW

Gary KC3PO
 

I just watched the K6UDA video an hour or so ago and don't recall any explicit mention of ARES/RACES ties being severed - it's mostly about the Shingletown repeater situation along with a dose of UDA's frustration over the whole thing. This is not the first I've heard of difficulty with state owned tower resources - Tom Preston, the speaker discussing AREDN at last month's club meeting mentioned that state towers are now managed by a different division within the state and are now considered to be real estate assets that need to monetized. That sounds like the main issue here. Of course, monetizing an asset is fine for commercial purposes... but it'd obviously be nice if non-profit community service organizations received a little due consideration as well. Typical misguided bureaucrats, IMO.

- Gary  KC3PO

Brian Gohl - AI6US
 

Agreed. The political diatribe is an unfortunate distraction from an important issue.

Best Regards! 
Brian Gohl - AI6US 
(916) 770-7751 cell

-------- Original message --------
From: Alan Thompson <alan@...>
Date: 10/2/19 10:49 AM (GMT-08:00)
To: Chris Robinson KF6NFW DMR ID 3153250 <kf6nfw@...>, sfarc@w6ek.groups.io
Subject: Re: [from W6EK Groups.io] California ends Amateur radio Support

Must say, I don't know where or how K6UDA pulled the State of California or Gavin Newsom into this. I can see any evidence of either.

This seems to be driven by a mid-level bureaucrat in Cal Fire, nothing more.
--
Brian- AI6US

Chris Robinson KF6NFW DMR ID 3153250
 

I appreciate the conversation guys!

I was broadsided with the video this morning from a club member in another radio club in midwest. I assumed at time of post this was another "Hate on California" video and rant, like so many others I see and hear in my line of work. As I work in Emergency Management, I am always looking to foster relationships with the amateur radio community. when I hear of stories like this, I often question the source and motives.

 In this particular case, I was unable to find anything anywhere about this situation. I hope we are able to follow it, and learn from this. It may affect other clubs later as well. I dont know how this all plays out, but if the states starts monetizing towers and demanding payment from ham clubs, I am concerned about the level of support the clubs could offer in future as a result.

I know from my perspective, I will be watching this. if California moves forward and defends such, I could see other states attempting this as well. cities and counties are strapped for cash and are looking at anything they think will gain them even $5. 

 

 

 

Dennis - WU6X
 

Fake need!!!

Dennis
iPhone Mobile

On Oct 2, 2019, at 9:54 AM, Chris Robinson KF6NFW DMR ID 3153250 <kf6nfw@...> wrote:

About 2 hrs ago, a post started to hit the amateur radio community that states California has ended all of its amateur radio relationships.

I strongly suspect this to be false, but I am more than curious about this now. Does anyone have any sources to the verasity of claim?

K6UDA has made this video and posted very publicly stating that the Gov of California has fired all ARES/RACES and other amateur groups that work with state.

 

I find this a bit of an alarmist, and probably crying wolf, but does anyone have any idea what this guy is talking about.

 

His video has been posted on reddit and various other amateur related groups already this morning. a group I belong to as well in Midwest has started to come unglued over this thinking and crying the sky is falling!

 

anyone??

 

Chris Robinson

KF6NFW


--
Dennis - WU6X

Bob Brodovsky
 

Chris,
Gavin is the CEO of the state. all decisions ultimately land at his feet. I was pissed when I made it, I’m still pissed now and I will not apologize or politely sit down. I never mentioned anything about ARES, RACES or any local group. To me, the attorney’s letter was well thought out, organized and much more cohesive than my rant. This isn’t about one group or one repeater owner either. It’s about all of the affected repeaters and communities around them. My intention wasn’t to make this political beyond letting other California hams know what is happening and maybe get some of them to write a letter to help support the cause. As for my open letter to the ARRL, what exactly have they done for us? HOA parity? went nowhere. I’d like to see the ARRL get off their asses and start earning the dues they get from the membership. 
I understand that the old school hams are quite peaceful gentlemen who don’t rock the boat. I’m not built that way. I’ve got a platform that I built and I’m using it to express MY opinion. Nothing more & no apologies. 

73,
Bob Brodovsky (K6UDA)
The Ham Radio Show Your Mother Warned You About
(916) 871-0726






On Oct 2, 2019, at 11:15 AM, Chris Robinson KF6NFW DMR ID 3153250 <kf6nfw@...> wrote:

I appreciate the conversation guys!

I was broadsided with the video this morning from a club member in another radio club in midwest. I assumed at time of post this was another "Hate on California" video and rant, like so many others I see and hear in my line of work. As I work in Emergency Management, I am always looking to foster relationships with the amateur radio community. when I hear of stories like this, I often question the source and motives.

 In this particular case, I was unable to find anything anywhere about this situation. I hope we are able to follow it, and learn from this. It may affect other clubs later as well. I dont know how this all plays out, but if the states starts monetizing towers and demanding payment from ham clubs, I am concerned about the level of support the clubs could offer in future as a result.

I know from my perspective, I will be watching this. if California moves forward and defends such, I could see other states attempting this as well. cities and counties are strapped for cash and are looking at anything they think will gain them even $5. 

 
 
 

Al - WB6RUU
 

Bob I appreciate your candor and share your sentiment regarding the benefit amateur radio has provided to this state and indeed the whole country in times of emergencies and disasters. 

This Cal Fire manager is obviously badly informed if she believes technological advances have rendered amateur radio emergency services unnecessary. 

The recent debacle with “hands free” law that effectively made it illegal to use a hand held microphone in vehicles ( other than commercial public safety) is a blatant example of knee jerk legislation that is detrimental to amateur radio. I feel that this is a trip down the same road. The ARRL was asked to help with the “hands free” legislation but chose not to. 

The federal government has long recognized the benefit to the public that amateur radio provides. Apparently there are those in agencies and government in this state who don’t.  


On Oct 2, 2019, at 8:21 PM, Bob Brodovsky <k6udaradio@...> wrote:

Chris,
Gavin is the CEO of the state. all decisions ultimately land at his feet. I was pissed when I made it, I’m still pissed now and I will not apologize or politely sit down. I never mentioned anything about ARES, RACES or any local group. To me, the attorney’s letter was well thought out, organized and much more cohesive than my rant. This isn’t about one group or one repeater owner either. It’s about all of the affected repeaters and communities around them. My intention wasn’t to make this political beyond letting other California hams know what is happening and maybe get some of them to write a letter to help support the cause. As for my open letter to the ARRL, what exactly have they done for us? HOA parity? went nowhere. I’d like to see the ARRL get off their asses and start earning the dues they get from the membership. 
I understand that the old school hams are quite peaceful gentlemen who don’t rock the boat. I’m not built that way. I’ve got a platform that I built and I’m using it to express MY opinion. Nothing more & no apologies. 

73,
Bob Brodovsky (K6UDA)
The Ham Radio Show Your Mother Warned You About
(916) 871-0726






On Oct 2, 2019, at 11:15 AM, Chris Robinson KF6NFW DMR ID 3153250 <kf6nfw@...> wrote:

I appreciate the conversation guys!

I was broadsided with the video this morning from a club member in another radio club in midwest. I assumed at time of post this was another "Hate on California" video and rant, like so many others I see and hear in my line of work. As I work in Emergency Management, I am always looking to foster relationships with the amateur radio community. when I hear of stories like this, I often question the source and motives.

 In this particular case, I was unable to find anything anywhere about this situation. I hope we are able to follow it, and learn from this. It may affect other clubs later as well. I dont know how this all plays out, but if the states starts monetizing towers and demanding payment from ham clubs, I am concerned about the level of support the clubs could offer in future as a result.

I know from my perspective, I will be watching this. if California moves forward and defends such, I could see other states attempting this as well. cities and counties are strapped for cash and are looking at anything they think will gain them even $5. 

 
 
 

Carl - N6CKV
 

From Greg KG6SJT or SEC

Here is a bit more information about the possible removal of a repeater in Shingletown
 
Our Section Manager Carol, Milazzo, KP4MD,   contacted Jim Tiemstra, K6JAT, Pacific Division Director and he replied:
 
…This issue arose in Socal 5 to 10 years ago. They have been able to address the issue as follows:
Overall -

The State of California has not made any determination we can find  "that Ham Radio [is] no longer a benefit."What happened is that CAL FIRE has transferred responsibility for its communications sites to its property management department.  That department has the task of evaluating each site, its condition, use and tenants.  If a repeater not known to be associated with the emergency management function of a local jurisdiction is found in a CAL FIRE vault, the default action is to move it out or subject it to commercial rental rates.

Our contact in the California Office of Emergency Services suggests that, if any affected repeater is in any way involved with local emergency or government support activity, they should ask that agency to engage with CAL FIRE concerning the repeater.  If the agency makes the case, there is a good chance that the repeater will be unaffected.

Their advice is not to elevate this to State Legislators or the Governor's office. In Southern California, wherein sites managed by the U.S. Forest Service have required repeater owners to post bonds to cover the dismantling of their sites if they cease operation. Negotiation has resulted in considerable easing of the original requirements and a modification of terms to help mitigate the short-term financial impact on those repeater owners.

Hope this helps.
73,

Jim Tiemstra, K6JAT
Pacific Division Director


Thursday Evening David Goldenberg W0DHG and Jim Aspinwall NO1PC discuss this issue on Ham Radio Now.
 
HRN 414: There Is No Such Thing As Free Rack Space! 
David Goldenberg W0DHG and Jim Aspinwall NO1PC discuss this week's BIG California ham radio story. Was the repeater kicked out of the CalFire vault, or did the state just decide that it needed to be "official"....
https://youtu.be/YxEty6jC5po

Alan Thompson
 

Carl,

Thanks for that. Solving this issue needs clarity, not panic.

SFMARC W6SFM
 

Before you buy into this "letter" from Cal Fire.  Please read the following information making correction to this statement. This was thoroughly discussed at the W6SFM club meeting last night:

The State of California has not made any determination we can find  "that Ham Radio [is] no longer a benefit."What happened is that CAL FIRE has transferred responsibility for its communications sites to its property management department.  That department has the task of evaluating each site, its condition, use and tenants.  If a repeater not known to be associated with the emergency management function of a local jurisdiction is found in a CAL FIRE vault, the default action is to move it out or subject it to commercial rental rates.

Our contact in the California Office of Emergency Services suggests that, if any affected repeater is in any way involved with local emergency or government support activity, they should ask that agency to engage with CAL FIRE concerning the repeater.  If the agency makes the case, there is a good chance that the repeater will be unaffected.

Their advice is not to elevate this to State Legislators or the Governor's office. In Southern California, wherein sites managed by the U.S. Forest Service have required repeater owners to post bonds to cover the dismantling of their sites if they cease operation. Negotiation has resulted in considerable easing of the original requirements and a modification of terms to help mitigate the short-term financial impact on those repeater owners.


Hope this helps.

73,

Jim Tiemstra, K6JAT

-- 
W6SFM
www.w6sfm.com

Gerry - WA6E
 

So is this an opportunity to perhaps make lemonade out of lemons?  By this I mean are there USFS or CalFire radio vaults around that we should be looking at in our quest for a better repeater site?  It sounds like they would still be receptive to a good public service argument for allowing us in to such a site.

Gerry
WA6E

On 10/4/2019 7:11 AM, Carl - N6CKV wrote:
From Greg KG6SJT or SEC

Here is a bit more information about the possible removal of a repeater in Shingletown
 
Our Section Manager Carol, Milazzo, KP4MD,   contacted Jim Tiemstra, K6JAT, Pacific Division Director and he replied:
 
…This issue arose in Socal 5 to 10 years ago. They have been able to address the issue as follows:
Overall -

The State of California has not made any determination we can find  "that Ham Radio [is] no longer a benefit."What happened is that CAL FIRE has transferred responsibility for its communications sites to its property management department.  That department has the task of evaluating each site, its condition, use and tenants.  If a repeater not known to be associated with the emergency management function of a local jurisdiction is found in a CAL FIRE vault, the default action is to move it out or subject it to commercial rental rates.

Our contact in the California Office of Emergency Services suggests that, if any affected repeater is in any way involved with local emergency or government support activity, they should ask that agency to engage with CAL FIRE concerning the repeater.  If the agency makes the case, there is a good chance that the repeater will be unaffected.

Their advice is not to elevate this to State Legislators or the Governor's office. In Southern California, wherein sites managed by the U.S. Forest Service have required repeater owners to post bonds to cover the dismantling of their sites if they cease operation. Negotiation has resulted in considerable easing of the original requirements and a modification of terms to help mitigate the short-term financial impact on those repeater owners.

Hope this helps.
73,

Jim Tiemstra, K6JAT
Pacific Division Director


Thursday Evening David Goldenberg W0DHG and Jim Aspinwall NO1PC discuss this issue on Ham Radio Now.
 
HRN 414: There Is No Such Thing As Free Rack Space! 
David Goldenberg W0DHG and Jim Aspinwall NO1PC discuss this week's BIG California ham radio story. Was the repeater kicked out of the CalFire vault, or did the state just decide that it needed to be "official"....
https://youtu.be/YxEty6jC5po

Bob Brodovsky
 

I have purposely remained quiet since posting my video. I did that for two reason, the first was the shear number of responses, good, bad, crazy ect.. is overwhelming. The second is because this has caused such an uproar, I am getting additional information now from both the attorney for the repeater group and the State of CA. The state has reached out off the record through someone we all know and trust as a source. I can't give specific but an un named senior official told my source that my video has caused the state to elevate this issue to get resolved and to develop both an official response and a concrete policy regarding ham radio repeaters on state property. 

Now for those that keep insisting this is about revenue and hams paying for rack space, my bitch isn't the fact that some repeater owners got a letter to remove equipment, rather they got this letter:

Hello :

I do understand and appreciate all of the service you have provided in the past. However, with constantly changing technological advances, there is no longer the same benefit to State as previously provided. Therefore, the Department no longer financially supports HAM operators radios or tenancy. If you desire to enter into a formal agreement to operate and maintain said equipment, you must complete and submit attached collocation application along with fee as outlined on page one of application. 

There is cost associated with getting an agreement in place. In addition to the technical analysis fee ($2500/application), there is DGS Lease admin cost associated (typically between $3000-$5000) with preparation of lease. Also, there will be an annual rent charge based upon equipment type/space.

 Please let me know how you wish to proceed. If you determine the cost is too great to proceed, please make arrangements with me to remove equipment. If you still have questions, please do not hesitate to ask. I am much more readily available via email.

Now, I don't know if this lady drank too much AT&T FirstNet Koolaid or if she was just ignorant of what Ham Radio actually provide the public, but what she wrote is on it's face and until the state  or Cal Fire officially over rides it The policy and opinion of the State, Full Stop. Any reasonable & prudent person receiving such letter from the government would believe it so.  And because it hasn't been immediately felt with at the Cal Fire and OES level, People are still dealing with it. 

Now had the State sent letters out to repeater owners stating something to the effect of: Dear Repeater owner, After an audit of our communications vault we discovered your private repeater is currently housed there. The State can no longer financially absorb the operation of private ham radio repeaters … that, if any affected repeater is in any way involved with local emergency or government support activity, they should ask that agency to engage with CAL FIRE concerning the repeater.  If the agency makes the case, there is a good chance that the repeater will be unaffected. We wouldn't be having this discussion now. 

As for the $7500 application fee, That business speak for screw you, get your radio out of my building. Now, I'll be doing an update video when I have an official response from the State. As for the ARRL, I'm surprised at their response of 
The State of California has not made any determination we can find  "that Ham Radio [is] no longer a benefit. In the face of with constantly changing technological advances, there is no longer the same benefit to State as previously provided. I'm really disappointed in that tepid response. It's apparent the ARRL doesn't want to step up and at least call the State on an official statement that was made. 
I'm only writing this to you guys because your my friends and my club mates. You can disagree with me if you want but if you look at the fact on the face there's no argument. 

Bob K6UDA

 

 

Bob Brodovsky
 

And please excuse Mac OS auto correct. It sucks. 

Jef - N5JEF
 

Bob: I agree with much of what you said, and respect your position on all of it.

Gary:  Yes, the response was undoubtedly ignorant and bureaucratic. As might be expected. Can't say I would use the KillDozer guy as an example of much other than crazy.

- Jef  

On Sat, Oct 5, 2019 at 3:33 PM Bob Brodovsky <k6udaradio@...> wrote:
And please excuse Mac OS auto correct. It sucks. 

Earl Wilson
 

Bob,

Good that you have brought up the subject for discussion.  Hopefully this will bring a clear resolution that will be in effect for a long time that will enable good communication planning for the future.  Thanks for jumping in.

Earl, K6GPB

On 10/5/2019 15:24, Bob Brodovsky wrote:
I have purposely remained quiet since posting my video. I did that for two reason, the first was the shear number of responses, good, bad, crazy ect.. is overwhelming. The second is because this has caused such an uproar, I am getting additional information now from both the attorney for the repeater group and the State of CA. The state has reached out off the record through someone we all know and trust as a source. I can't give specific but an un named senior official told my source that my video has caused the state to elevate this issue to get resolved and to develop both an official response and a concrete policy regarding ham radio repeaters on state property. 

Now for those that keep insisting this is about revenue and hams paying for rack space, my bitch isn't the fact that some repeater owners got a letter to remove equipment, rather they got this letter:

Hello :

I do understand and appreciate all of the service you have provided in the past. However, with constantly changing technological advances, there is no longer the same benefit to State as previously provided. Therefore, the Department no longer financially supports HAM operators radios or tenancy. If you desire to enter into a formal agreement to operate and maintain said equipment, you must complete and submit attached collocation application along with fee as outlined on page one of application. 

There is cost associated with getting an agreement in place. In addition to the technical analysis fee ($2500/application), there is DGS Lease admin cost associated (typically between $3000-$5000) with preparation of lease. Also, there will be an annual rent charge based upon equipment type/space.

 Please let me know how you wish to proceed. If you determine the cost is too great to proceed, please make arrangements with me to remove equipment. If you still have questions, please do not hesitate to ask. I am much more readily available via email.

Now, I don't know if this lady drank too much AT&T FirstNet Koolaid or if she was just ignorant of what Ham Radio actually provide the public, but what she wrote is on it's face and until the state  or Cal Fire officially over rides it The policy and opinion of the State, Full Stop. Any reasonable & prudent person receiving such letter from the government would believe it so.  And because it hasn't been immediately felt with at the Cal Fire and OES level, People are still dealing with it. 

Now had the State sent letters out to repeater owners stating something to the effect of: Dear Repeater owner, After an audit of our communications vault we discovered your private repeater is currently housed there. The State can no longer financially absorb the operation of private ham radio repeaters … that, if any affected repeater is in any way involved with local emergency or government support activity, they should ask that agency to engage with CAL FIRE concerning the repeater.  If the agency makes the case, there is a good chance that the repeater will be unaffected. We wouldn't be having this discussion now. 

As for the $7500 application fee, That business speak for screw you, get your radio out of my building. Now, I'll be doing an update video when I have an official response from the State. As for the ARRL, I'm surprised at their response of 
The State of California has not made any determination we can find  "that Ham Radio [is] no longer a benefit. In the face of with constantly changing technological advances, there is no longer the same benefit to State as previously provided. I'm really disappointed in that tepid response. It's apparent the ARRL doesn't want to step up and at least call the State on an official statement that was made. 
I'm only writing this to you guys because your my friends and my club mates. You can disagree with me if you want but if you look at the fact on the face there's no argument. 

Bob K6UDA

 

 

Aaron K6ABJ
 

Very well said!

Aaron, K6ABJ 

On Oct 6, 2019, at 2:38 PM, Earl Wilson <earlw@...> wrote:

Bob,

Good that you have brought up the subject for discussion.  Hopefully this will bring a clear resolution that will be in effect for a long time that will enable good communication planning for the future.  Thanks for jumping in.

Earl, K6GPB

On 10/5/2019 15:24, Bob Brodovsky wrote:
I have purposely remained quiet since posting my video. I did that for two reason, the first was the shear number of responses, good, bad, crazy ect.. is overwhelming. The second is because this has caused such an uproar, I am getting additional information now from both the attorney for the repeater group and the State of CA. The state has reached out off the record through someone we all know and trust as a source. I can't give specific but an un named senior official told my source that my video has caused the state to elevate this issue to get resolved and to develop both an official response and a concrete policy regarding ham radio repeaters on state property. 

Now for those that keep insisting this is about revenue and hams paying for rack space, my bitch isn't the fact that some repeater owners got a letter to remove equipment, rather they got this letter:

Hello :

I do understand and appreciate all of the service you have provided in the past. However, with constantly changing technological advances, there is no longer the same benefit to State as previously provided. Therefore, the Department no longer financially supports HAM operators radios or tenancy. If you desire to enter into a formal agreement to operate and maintain said equipment, you must complete and submit attached collocation application along with fee as outlined on page one of application. 

There is cost associated with getting an agreement in place. In addition to the technical analysis fee ($2500/application), there is DGS Lease admin cost associated (typically between $3000-$5000) with preparation of lease. Also, there will be an annual rent charge based upon equipment type/space.

 Please let me know how you wish to proceed. If you determine the cost is too great to proceed, please make arrangements with me to remove equipment. If you still have questions, please do not hesitate to ask. I am much more readily available via email.

Now, I don't know if this lady drank too much AT&T FirstNet Koolaid or if she was just ignorant of what Ham Radio actually provide the public, but what she wrote is on it's face and until the state  or Cal Fire officially over rides it The policy and opinion of the State, Full Stop. Any reasonable & prudent person receiving such letter from the government would believe it so.  And because it hasn't been immediately felt with at the Cal Fire and OES level, People are still dealing with it. 

Now had the State sent letters out to repeater owners stating something to the effect of: Dear Repeater owner, After an audit of our communications vault we discovered your private repeater is currently housed there. The State can no longer financially absorb the operation of private ham radio repeaters … that, if any affected repeater is in any way involved with local emergency or government support activity, they should ask that agency to engage with CAL FIRE concerning the repeater.  If the agency makes the case, there is a good chance that the repeater will be unaffected. We wouldn't be having this discussion now. 

As for the $7500 application fee, That business speak for screw you, get your radio out of my building. Now, I'll be doing an update video when I have an official response from the State. As for the ARRL, I'm surprised at their response of 
The State of California has not made any determination we can find  "that Ham Radio [is] no longer a benefit. In the face of with constantly changing technological advances, there is no longer the same benefit to State as previously provided. I'm really disappointed in that tepid response. It's apparent the ARRL doesn't want to step up and at least call the State on an official statement that was made. 
I'm only writing this to you guys because your my friends and my club mates. You can disagree with me if you want but if you look at the fact on the face there's no argument. 

Bob K6UDA