Ten New States Added to the List of States Taking UAS Legislative Action

The list of states pursuing restrictions on the use of unmanned aircraft systems, or UAS (‘drones’) continues to grow. The Academy’s Government Relations Team has been diligently working to continue to update members on the progression of legislation by posting information on an informational map posted on the AMA’s website:   https://amablog.modelaircraft.org/amagov/drone-legislation/.

Over the weekend, ten new states were added to the quickly progressing list. These states include Alaska, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, New Mexico and Rhode Island. Wyoming was also added to the map. However, this particular piece of legislation failed in committee on February 25th. Virginia amended and passed its legislation effectively kicking this can down the road by prohibiting the use of unmanned aircraft by government entities until July 2015, presumably until after the final FAA rule for small Unmanned Aircraft Systems is published. Information on the proposed legislation for each state is available by clicking on the state on the map.

For more information about the Academy’s continued advocacy efforts visit:  https://www.modelaircraft.org/aboutama/gov.aspx


  1. Is the AMA going to provide draft template letters for members to contact their state representatives about the impact of the new laws to model aviation?

    1. John… The AMA Executive Council is meeting in a conference call tomorrow night (3/13) to discuss this issue and to consider several possible courses of action, including the one you’ve suggested.

      Keep an eye on the GR Blog and we’ll let you know what’s been decided.

      Rich Hanson
      AMA Government and Regulatory Affairs

      1. Dear Mr. Hansen,

        Although I am a AMA member, I am new to this part of the website and began searching when I read the article about legislation in this months issue of Model Aviation. I am from Idaho and see that legislation is being proposed there. I have read the proposed legislation and I am not quite sure yet how this would negatively impact RC aircraft modelers – given the definitions within the legilation, and the purpose of the bill. I will take more time to read it. But, if there has been correspondence sent to Idaho legislators regarding this bill, or if you can enlighten me on what concerns the AMA has with Idaho’s particular bill I would like to hear what it is. I will write and/or call legislators in Idaho in attempt to deter legislation that will negatively impact the RC aircraft modelers. I have not seen or cannot find any information on template letter that was inquired of earlier. Please let me know how I can help the AMA.

        1. Darren… SB 1067 introduced into the Idaho legislature is not as problematic as other legislation in other states. However, the language in the last paragraph in Section 3 of the Bill states, “No person, entity or state agency shall use a drone or other unmanned aircraft to conduct surveillance of any individual, property owned by an individual… without the consent of that individual, property owner,” It’s likely the legislation is not intended to address model aircraft operations; nevertheless, the definition of the term ‘drone’ and the reference to unmanned aircraft in the Bill could be interpreted to include MA. And, as written it’s unclear whether the casual overflight of private property by a model aircraft equipped with an imaging device would constitute a violation of the law.

          We have not yet initiated communication with the sponsors of SB 1067 or other members of the Idaho legislature. AMA is continuing to monitoring the Bill as it progresses through the legislature and will alert the membership should it become essential for individual members to engage in the process.

          If you’re interested in assisting the AMA in monitoring state legislation and/or interacting with members of the legislature, please contact your local AVP or AMA District Vice President. In the case of SB 1067, Idaho is in AMA District XI and Mike Mosbrooker ( mosbrookerdxi@comcast.net ) is the District Vice President.

          Rich Hanson
          AMA Government and Regulatory Affairs

  2. The reason for pushing such laws is not paranoia, but paranoia is used to give a political cover for it.
    It feels it’s a waste of time, … the entities pushing the states to pass laws against small UAVs are UAV businesses who mostly work for government agencies and see as a threat the emergence of hobbyists, who mostly use low cost components from China, to build quite impressive UAVs that can become products at prices that are very affordable. The skills in embedded systems many hobbyists have and the very low cost of DSP/MCU boards with impressive computing power at very low voltage are such that even hobbyists can design a self navigating UAV for photography and similar applications.

    So, it’s very sad because this will indeed kill the hobby, not to mention the increasingly difficult task of finding a location where one can fly without being bothered.
    I wish this was different …
    The best way to stop the erosion of freedom on this wonderful hobby is taking money out of the political process .. and we know this won’t happen anytime soon, if ever.
    So, the only way is finding known personalities, say astronauts and colleagues, willing to come out swinging in favor of the hobby.
    We need guys like Buzz Aldrin or Mark Kelly .. they must be public figures with untouchable images (having walked on the moon is a good start 😉 May Be Elon Musk CEO at Space X, or perhaps even Bill Gates .. he is not a hands on geek guy, but he is well known. So, what the AMA must do is get these guys to talk, Government Connection through negotiating channels won’t work .. there must public pressure. GO get it, this is your mission ! THANK YOU

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