SB 9 - A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new article, designated §29-2B-1, §29-2B-2, §29-2B-3, §29-2B-4, §29-2B-5, §29-2B-6, §29-2B-7 and §29-2B-8, all relating to regulation of unmanned aircraft systems; requiring compliance with federal laws and regulations relating to such systems; defining terms; creating criminal offenses for certain conduct using an unmanned aircraft system and setting penalties therefor; regulating law-enforcement use of unmanned aircraft systems; limiting uses by law enforcement of unmanned aircraft systems; requiring search warrants to be obtained before unmanned aircraft systems may be used in criminal investigations and creating exemptions thereto; requiring documentation of law-enforcement flights of unmanned aircraft systems and maintenance of records; exempting images obtained pursuant to law-enforcement action from application of the Freedom of Information Act; precluding admissibility in civil, criminal and administrative proceedings of images or the evidence obtained in violation of the provisions of this article; requiring the West Virginia Aeronautics Commission in consultation with the Secretary of the West Virginia Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety, the West Virginia State Police and the Law-Enforcement Professional Standards Subcommittee of the Governor’s Committee on Crime, Delinquency and Correction to propose legislative rules and authorizing the promulgation of emergency rules; and specifically directing and authorizing the proposal and promulgation of certain rules.
On March 14, 2014 the Governor of West Virginia passed House Bill (HB) 2515 (download below) into law, and it went into effect ninety days thereafter. The bill reads as follows:
An act to amend and reenact §20-2-4, §20-2-5, §20-2-5a, §20-2-5g, §20-2-22a and §20-2-42w of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended; and to amend said code by adding thereto a new section, designated §20-2-5h, all relating to wildlife; disallowing elk to be possessed if struck by motor vehicle; requiring persons required to deliver wildlife to official checking station to electronically register wildlife; increasing fine for illegal taking of elk; prohibiting hunting wildlife with night vision technology, drone or other unmanned aircraft; clarifying when a person may carry certain firearms; permitting a person to carry firearm for self defense while in the woods; clarifying when a shotgun or rifle is unloaded; permitting hunting with crossbows during certain seasons and with certain limitations; establishing elk management area in Southern West Virginia; establishing elk damage fund; providing for criminal penalties for the illegal taking of elk; clarifying bear laws and Class Y permits; authorizing director to propose legislative rules; and making technical corrections.
HB 2515 prohibits hunting with UAS.
Sarah Nilsson, JD, PhD, MAS
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