Be Careful What You Lobby For

This is breaking news. It appears that proceedings on the ID and Tracking ARC did not produce the desired results. Word on the street is that the last ditch DJI push did not go over so well. I guess the white paper and “Aeroscope” fix didn’t wash with the rest of the group and no one is waiting around for the DAC recommendations as advocated by your friends at Airmap.

I’ve been banging the drum (marching band style) for the last couple of years that ham-fisted public policy work or “advocacy” is creating a situation that can only be fixed by and an act of Congress. The Cabal, the loose federation of drone armatures is working feverishly on ways of destroying both the commercial and hobby use of drones.

The camels back may have been broken –

It appears that the AUVSI has been working behind the scenes to help someone out, but this is one of those cases where we can say I wish you weren’t being so good to me boss.

It looks like I may have been wrong as regulatory UTM may be here sooner than we think. The following is what we are hearing, but many of the details are still up in the air.

Maybe demarcation for limited State and Local regulations/ordinances under 200′ AGL. Multiple geographical pilot sites to develop reasonable State, local and rules, laws, ordinances, restriction authority.

The work AUVSI describes in the letter “For months, we have advocated on Capitol Hill for a pilot program that allows state and local governments,“ is coming to fruition. Some parts of this plan are imminent. DoT and the FAA are rumoured to have (or are) supposedly signed off on it, and they are just waiting on Trump’s scheduled to announce soon.

Many more questions than answers at this point, but be on the lookout for the fallout from half-baked plans and sub-par lobbying.
It appears that the AUVSI has been working behind the scenes to help someone out, but this is definitely one of those cases where we can say I wish you weren’t being so good to me boss.

Looks like I may have been wrong as regulatory UTM may be here sooner than we think. The following is what we are hearing, but many of the details are still up in the air.

The “plan” may include demarcation for limited State and Local regulations/ordinances under 200′ AGL. Multiple geographical pilot sites to develop reasonable State, local and rules, laws, ordinances, restriction authority.

Many more questions than answers at this point, but be on the lookout for fallout from half-baked plans and sub-par lobbying.

The AUVSI letter

October 11, 2017

President Donald J. Trump
1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
Washington, DC 20006

Dear President Trump:

Innovation has been integral to America’s economic success and it will also play a crucial role in its future. A technology that shows great promise and tremendous benefits to continue moving our nation’s economy forward is unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), which is forecast to create more than 100,000 jobs and over $82 billion in economic impact over the next decade.

However, much needs to be done to realize these gains. In a recent speech at a UAS industry conference, Deputy U.S. Chief Technology Officer Michael Kratsios noted, “The federal government can’t do it all – we need partners who can stand up and serve as models for this industry, demonstrating to the rest of the world how to deploy this technology correctly, smartly and safely.”

We completely agree and have long said that government-industry collaboration is key to unlocking the tremendous societal and economic benefits of UAS.

In his speech, Mr. Kratsios also highlighted the opportunities of working across federal, state, local and tribal lines toward a common goal of safely integrating UAS into the national airspace. For months, we have advocated on Capitol Hill for a pilot program that allows state and local governments, along with UAS industry stakeholders, to develop a coordinated effort with the FAA concerning UAS airspace integration. We are pleased that your administration has also identified this as a sensible approach.

A pilot program would allow for a data-driven process, within a controlled operational environment, to explore the best options for states and municipalities to address their needs, as it relates to different types of UAS operations. Additionally, a pilot program is the best option for informing future regulatory and congressional action that will help enhance innovation and increase economic impact.

Overall though, the FAA sovereignty of the national airspace must not be compromised. Federal control of the airspace is a bedrock principle of aviation law that dates back over 50 years, and is the primary reason the United States maintains an aviation safety record that is the envy of the world. Maintaining the FAA’s authority helps keep the skies safe for all aircraft – manned and unmanned.

We greatly appreciate your attention to this matter, and we look forward to continue working with your administration and Congress to ensure the United States remains a leader in UAS and the broader aviation sector.

Sincerely,

Brian P. Wynne
President and CEO
AUVSI

[OTHER SIGNATORIES]

CC: Michael Kratsios, Deputy U.S. Chief Technology Officer

Previous articleDJI Unveils Technology To Identify And Track Airborne Drones – Aeroscope
Next articleUAVOS unmanned helicopters to operate in tropical climes
Patrick Egan

Editor in Field, sUAS News Americas Desk | Patrick Egan is the editor of the Americas Desk at sUAS News and host and Executive Producer of the sUAS News Podcast Series, Drone TV and the Small Unmanned Systems Business Exposition. Experience in the field includes assignments with the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command Battle Lab investigating solutions on future warfare research projects. Instructor for LTA (Lighter Than Air) ISR systems deployment teams for an OSD, U.S. Special Operations Command, Special Surveillance Project. Built and operated commercial RPA prior to 2007 FAA policy clarification. On the airspace integration side, he serves as director of special programs for the RCAPA (Remote Control Aerial Photography Association).