The AMA Government Affairs team continues advocating for a commonsense solution to Remote ID. The most recent effort AMA organized was a joint industry letter with EAA, AOPA, and Google’s sister company, Wing, urging the FAA to make essential changes to the proposed rule for Remote ID. The joint industry letter can be read here. AMA’s Government Affairs Director, Tyler Dobbs, was recently on the AMA podcast discussing the joint industry letter and Remote ID.
The podcast can be heard here.
The FAA continues to maintain that their plan is to announce a final Remote ID rule by the end of the calendar year. They have reviewed more than 53,000 comments that were submitted in response to the Notice of Proposed Rule Making and on October 6, 2020, the proposed rule was sent to the Office of Management and Budget, the final step in the rulemaking process. After a final rule has been announced, there will be an implementation period that could take up to three years. AMA continues to meet with the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, the Senate Commerce Committee, and the Office of Management and Budget to remind them of the impact this rule will have on the hobby and urge the FAA to develop a direct and reasonable response to Remote ID.
AMA continues to work with the FAA to ensure that our clubs located in controlled airspace receive letters of agreement (LOAs) with their air traffic control (ATC) facility. Approximately 150 clubs have obtained their agreements so far, with 60 clubs still working toward their LOAs. AMA also has approximately 40 clubs awaiting safety risk management (SRM) panels in order to obtain an altitude higher than the FAA UAS facility map allows in their area. The next SRM panel is set for November.
Some recreational fliers may have FAA registrations that expire soon. As a result of an expiration extension, the earliest expiration date is December 12, 2020. You are now able to renew your registration within 180 days of your expiration date. To renew your registration, visit FAADroneZone.faa.gov. Your registration is good for three years and costs $5. Please be aware of FAA scam sites charging more than $5.
With the presidential election quickly approaching, FAA NOTAM/TFRs will be more frequent as the candidates continue with their campaigns, especially in swing states such as Florida, Texas, Wisconsin, and Ohio. TFRs should appear less frequently after the election is over. As always, be sure to check tfr.faa.gov for TFRs in your area before flying.
The FAA is currently working on Advisory Circular (AC) 91-57C, which will include a process for community-based organization recognition and information regarding the upcoming knowledge and safety test, both required by Section 349 of the 2018 FAA Reauthorization Act. AMA has worked closely with the FAA on this upcoming test to ensure a reasonable and sensible outcome. Members should expect this AC to be out for public comment by the end of the calendar year.
The proposed White House executive order on foreign-made UAS, which would ban the federal government’s use or purchase of foreign-made UAS and impact AMA members operating on military property, national parks, Army Corps of Engineer lands, and EPA-managed sites, has not yet been signed. AMA recently met with White House representatives to discuss our concerns and plans to continue working with the administration toward a more sensible solution.
Finally, AMA worked with Congress to include educational UAS protections in the upcoming National Defense Authorization Act. This bill is not expected to be passed until after the presidential election, but AMA remains confident that these protections will be included in the final version of the bill.