January 8, 2008
Santa Barbara, CA 93108
Re: DMV putting a space in middle of Amateur Radio call signs on license plates
Dear Governor Schwarzenegger,
With all due respect, I feel that some of your department appointees are not carrying on in the best interest of your constituents, namely, the thousands of federally licensed Amateur Radio operators throughout our State of California.
Like every other state in our country, California recognizes the fine service given by its Amateur Radio operators in times of disasters and emergencies by permitting them to display their FCC assigned call letters on their vehicle license plates, both front and rear. These specially assigned plates are instantly recognized by those who depend on the special talents of the “hams” to get the signal in and out when no other service is able to do it. They know that when all else fails, Amateur Radio gets through!
Now, unlike every other state in the Union, California has made a decision that our assigned call letters are too difficult to work with where the state’s DMV computers are concerned. For instance, my call sign is KF6DI. The DMV would break up my call sign and make it look like KF6 DI. Yes, the DMV has inserted a space somewhere between some characters and has destroyed the appearance of my call sign so that those who would instantly recognize it will now not recognize it for the importance that it holds.
It appears that one gentleman in charge of the DMV is adamant about correcting his mistake and has gotten the entire Amateur Radio community up in arms! There is really no excuse for his behavior. The Red Cross, the Offices of Emergency Service, law enforcement and many others recognize our Amateur Radio call signs on our license plates with the call letters we were issued by the Federal Communications Commission. What gives this man the right to distort, confuse and destroy the integrity of a well-recognized identification?
Please, Governor, use the powers of your good office and see to it that the Amateur Radio call sign license plate identification remains as it should and remove the inserted spaces the DMV computers are inserting.
I know you can do it.
Darryl Widman, KF6DI
Santa Barbara, California
Director, Santa Barbara Amateur Radio Club