Drones in the news
Where just the name of the bill or resolution is hyperlinked in black that means that it is not yet law!
Note that bills that are now law are changed to blue font
HB 412 - prohibits the regulation of UAS by localities.
HB 2350 - makes it a Class 1 misdemeanor to use UAS to trespass upon the property of another for the purpose of secretly or furtively peeping, spying, or attempting to peep or spy into a dwelling or occupied building located on such property.
SB 873 - specifies that the fire chief or other officer in charge of a fire department has authority to maintain order at an emergency incident including the immediate airspace. Individuals who don’t obey the orders of the officer in charge are guilty of a class 4 misdemeanor.
On April 3, 2013 the Governor of Virginia signed House Bill (HB) 2012 (download below) into law. This was an act to place a moratorium on the use of unmanned aircraft systems.
HB 2012 and SB 1331 prohibit drone use by any state agencies “having jurisdiction over criminal law enforcement or regulatory violations” or units of local law enforcement until July 1, 2015. Numerous exceptions to the ban are enumerated including enabling officials to deploy drones for Amber Alerts, Blue Alerts and use by the National Guard, by higher education institutions and search and rescue operations. The enacted bills also require the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services and other state agencies to research and develop model protocols for drone use by law enforcement in the state. They are required to report their findings to the General Assembly and governor by Nov. 1, 2013.
On April 30, 2015 the Governor signed House Bill (HB) 2125 (download below) into law. This was an act to amend the Code of Virginia by adding in Chapter 5 of Title 19.2 a section numbered 19.2-60.1, relating to use of unmanned aircraft systems by public bodies; search warrant required.
Virginia HB 2125 and SB 1301 require that a law enforcement agency obtain a warrant before using a drone for any purpose, except in limited circumstances. Virginia's governor also issued an executive order establishing a commission on unmanned systems.
On April 3, 2013 the Governor of Virginia signed Senate Bill (SB) 1331 (download below) into law. It is an act to place a moratorium on the use of unmanned aircraft systems.
On April 30, 2015 the Governor of Virginia signed Senate Bill (SB) 1301 (download below) into law. It is an act to amend the Code of Virginia by adding in Chapter 5 of Title 19.2 a section numbered 19.2-60.1, relating to use of unmanned aircraft systems by public bodies; search warrant required.
Sarah Nilsson, J.D., Ph.D., MAS
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