DRONES

Published: February 12 2014 | 4:03 pm - Updated: 29 March 2014 | 3:33 am in
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Legislation to regulate remotely operated aircraft flew through the House Public Safety committee and passed with unanimous, bipartisan support Wednesday afternoon. The bill outlines the definition of an unmanned aerial vehicle, also known as a drone, and requires state agencies and law enforcement to obtain a search warrant before using the technology with the exception of a few emergency situations. State agencies must also obtain approval by an elected body before purchasing a drone and must provide detailed reports on each determined use of the drone and the legislation prevents agencies from keeping any recorded images or audio for a prolonged period of time. The bill also limits individual drone use to private property to prevent harassment or stalking and prohibits the inclusion of a weapon or attachments that could cause damage or capture images. Rep. Jarad Klein, R-Keota, said it's important to establish regulations in the early development of the UAV technology. He said putting of the issue any longer could make it more difficult to reign in the rapid development and use of the devices in the future. Committee Chair Rep. Clel Baulder,R-Greenfield, said the bill addresses issue of privacy Iowans are very concerned about and he's confident it will pass the House with strong bipartisan support. Sen. Rob Hogg,D-Cedar Rapids, is working on a similar bill in the Senate.

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