Good evening,

We would like to provide an update as to the Hillsborough County ARES/RACES status regarding Hurricane Matthew. Thank you for those that have contacted us volunteering to deploy to our neighboring counties, we sincerely appreciate it. As an organization we are currently in a wait and see stance with no current deployment requests. At this time we ask that you be on stand-by for a potential EOC activation in the coming days.


There are three points we would like to address, deployment, Hillsborough County Emergency Management’s current posture regarding EOC activation and local storm impact (along with links to where you can find the current forecast for our area).


We are currently not requesting any Hillsborough County ARES/RACES team members to deploy to any neighboring counties. This is a request from the WCF ARES section. We may need volunteers here at home.


Hillsborough County Emergency Management’s current posture regarding activation is ‘wait and see’. There’s not a large wind threat currently forecasted for us but there may be a large influx of our neighbors from the east fleeing Hurricane Matthew. Opening shelters cannot be ruled out at this point.

At this time we ask that you be on stand-by for a potential EOC activation in the coming days.


From the NWS in Ruskin:
509 PM EDT Wed Oct 5 2016

… Tropical storm watch in effect…

A tropical storm watch means tropical storm wind conditions are
possible somewhere within this area and within the next 48 hours

* locations affected
– Tampa
– Apollo Beach
– westchase

* wind
– latest local forecast: below tropical storm force wind
– peak wind forecast: 15-25 mph with gusts to 35 mph

– current threat to life and property: elevated
– the wind threat has remained nearly steady from the
previous assessment.
– Remain braced against the reasonable threat for tropical
storm force wind of 39 to 57 mph.
– To be safe, efforts should fully focus on avoiding injury.
Properties remain subject to limited wind impacts.
– Now is the time to hide from the wind. Failure to
adequately shelter may result in serious injury. Remain
sheltered until the hazardous wind subsides.

– Potential impacts: unfolding
– potential impacts from the main wind event are unfolding.
– The extent of realized impacts will depend on the actual
strength, duration, and exposure of the wind as experienced
at particular locations.

* Flooding rain
– latest local forecast:
– peak rainfall amounts: additional around 1 inch

– current threat to life and property: none
– the flooding rain threat has remained nearly steady from
the previous assessment.
– Emergency considerations need not include a threat for
rainfall flooding. Locally heavy rain and nuisance flooding
may still occur.
– Little to no preparations needed to guard against excessive
tropical rainfall.
– Ensure readiness for the next tropical rainfall event.

– Potential impacts: little to none
– little to no potential impacts from flooding rain.

* Tornado
– latest local forecast:
– situation is unfavorable for tornadoes

– current threat to life and property: none
– the tornado threat has remained nearly steady from the
previous assessment.
– Emergency considerations need not include a threat for
tornadoes. Showers and thunderstorms with strong gusty
winds may still occur.
– Little to no preparations needed to guard against tropical
– Ensure readiness for the next tropical tornado event.

– Potential impacts: little to none
– little to no potential impacts from tornadoes.

* For more information:
– http://www.Weather.Gov/tbw

We appreciate your patience on stand by, we will provide more information as it becomes available.

If you would like more information or have questions feel free to contact:

Jon at 813.417.2357


Matt at 813.334.3496


Thanks in advance!


Matt Gibson
K4MJG – Hillsborough County ARES/RACES Liaison Officer


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Remote Base Users – Some Operational Suggestions

Hi all Remote Base users:

Some things I have noticed that might help you enjoy the RB a bit better.

  • VOX – Please don’t use VOX.  This has been recommended by the software developers.  It has problems in the current client.  This may be rectified in the new client once it is released.  Vox looks like it works, but wont make you more intelligible.  Avoid VOX
  • This is a Kenwood radio.  Most of you are used to an Icom radio.  There is no real need to turn the preamp on unless you are on 10 meters, and that is if conditions are poor.  Using the preamp will just make the receiver much more noisy.  Kenwoods hear quitewell and don need the preamp like Icom radios do.  Ignore the S meter.  If you can hear the station clearly, leave the preamp off for best receiver audio and intelligibility
  • Turn the processor on.  The radio system is optimized for the processor.  It will help keep levels consistent between all the different users and microphones that are used on the remote.  You are in control of the audio from your computer.  Set it carefully so that you have a few red spikes on the audio wave display on the client top window.  With the proceessor on, this will give you good audio reports. Email me or any of the other admins for help with your audio settings.  The better your microphone, the better your results.  We are optimized for Yamaha CM500 headsets.
  • Please make sure you have AGC on and its either on Fast or Slow.  No AGC means no S meter.  It also means low audio and you will have to manage RF gain.  On the remote it will be much easier to not have to manage RF gain.  Make sure AGC is turned on before operating
  • Make sure you are on the wide filter.  Use the narrower filter only if you really need it for QRM. The receiver sounds much better with the wider filter.
  • MAKE SURE you press TUNE every time before you transmit.  This sets the tuner to the antenna.  This will help keep the transmitter transmitting.
  • Don’t forget that the antennas are switched for you automatically depending on the band you are operating
  • Please remember that the remote takes a little time to switch from receive to transmit and that there is a half second delay from when you press the PTT button to the time the transmitter comes on and goes off.  Practice with this timing, especially in pileups.  It takes a while to get the hang of it. Practice makes perfect.

We hope that these things help you enjoy the remote base a bit more.

With best 73
Lu Romero – W4LT
Senior RB Admin

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Melbourne Hamfest – October 21st and 22nd, 2016


We are just one week away from the Melbourne Hamfest and ARRL Florida State convention. The Hamfest will be open Friday Oct. 7th from 1PM until 7PM and Saturday Oct. 8th from 9AM until 3PM. The location is the Melbourne Auditorium, 625 E Hibiscus Blvd, Melbourne, FL.  If you have not purchased your Swap Table, there are still a few in both the main room and some in the side rooms. In addition we will have our large Tailgate area open by 10AM on Friday.

We have listed all the forums, times and locations on our website. Norm Fusaro W3IZ will be coming from League Headquarters to present the ARRL Forum. He will be discussing the Logbook Of The World (LOTW) and can answer questions you may have about the LOTW program and the ARRL in general. Don’t forget to come by the ARRL Table and meet Norm.  In addition, Fridaywill have forums by  QCWA, AMSAT and High Speed MESH Networking.  The ARRL QSL Card checkers will be at the ARRL table so bring your cards and get your credit for those QSL cards.  Click here for the Melbourne Hamfest Website.

On Saturday morning AMATEUR LICENSE EXAMS will be given in the Fee Avenue Library building only 600 feet behind the Auditorium. Testing will start at 9AM.  It is an easy walk from the Auditorium. Be sure to pre-register before the Hamfest if you plan to take any of the License Tests. Click here for information about the testing and pre-registering.

If you have some equipment to sell and don’t want to rent a table, we offer a Consignment Table where you can bring your equipment and PCARS Members will sell your items while you enjoy the Hamfest. Click here for the form to fill out to describe your equipment and the price.

As in the past, we will have drawings hourly for nice Door Prizes. You must claim the hourly prize within the hour. The Main Prizes will be given away between 2:30pm and 3pm on Saturday. Click here for a list of the main prizes and donors for hourly prizes.

We hope to see you at the 2016 Melbourne Hamfest and ARRL Florida State Convention.

Don Winn  AF4Z
Hamfest Chairman

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Treasurer’s Report – October 2016


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Treasurer’s Report – September 2016


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City of Tampa – Reported Street Flooding

If you live or work in Tampa, you can use this map to check real-time flooding status:

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DATE: Tue Aug 30 20:23:01 UTC 2016

Due to tropical depression number 9, Hillsborough County ARES RACES has been asked to activate starting at 7am Thursday until 7pm or as the situation warrants.

The HC EOC will be partially activated during this time. If you are able to come and assist for all or part of the time, please let me know. We will be running a net looking for reports of severe weather and/or storm damage in Hillsborough County.

We plan on using the TARC repeater but due to issues that it is having we may switch to an alternate.

Please Monitor 147.105 & for more information as it becomes available.

Jon Rubin
Emergency Coordinator
Hillsborough County ARES RACES

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FCC Confirms Field Office Closures in 2017

FCC Confirms Field Office Closures Begin in 2017
by Randy J. Stine
on 08.26.2016

The Federal Communication Commission is confirming to Radio World that it will begin closing field offices in January 2017. Offices in Anchorage, Alaska, Buffalo, N.Y., Detroit, Houston, Kansas City, Mo., Norfolk, Va., Philadelphia, San Diego, San Juan, Puerto Rico, Seattle, and Tampa, Fla., will be closed as part of the agency’s modernization plan.

The FCC announced in July 2015 it was closing the offices and trimming up to 44 positions to better reflect technological advances and in the face of budget reductions. The modernization plan creates rapid response teams to handle special enforcement issues. The FCC says the so-called Tiger Teams, based out of Columbia, Md., and Denver, will be dispatched within 24 hours of an interference crisis.

The restructuring plan has the National Association of Broadcasters and the Society of Broadcast Engineers worried that the cuts in the field will limit the FCC’s ability to mitigate interference complaints and leave potential holes in the enforcement fence.

Before the plan could be implemented the FCC had to reach an agreement over the projected job losses with the union representing FCC Enforcement Bureau field employees. The National Treasury Employees Union has been a vocal critic of the overhaul plan, openly questioning the commission’s ability to safeguard radio spectrum going forward. An FCC spokesperson confirmed on Thursday that the displaced FCC agents will have the opportunity to apply for vacancies in the remaining field offices if a vacancy exists.

FCC field offices will remain open in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Columbia, Md., Dallas, Denver, Honolulu, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, Portland, Ore., and San Francisco.

– See more at:

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TARCFest This Saturday

Saturday at 8:00 AM. Only $4 admission – We guarantee a great time!

TARC, 7801 N. 22nd St., Tampa, FL 33610

Click here for the flyer

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Treasuruer’s Report – August 2016


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