The drone technology was first notably created for military purposes, but with the excess of ordinary citizens (or in other words, civilians) acquiring this piece of sophisticated technology for many reasons, which range from pure recreation to as many other things as they can think of, the government of Rhode Island has seen the need to pass a bill into constitution regarding the use and regulation of this technology.
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The House (in Rhode Island) has successfully seen to it that a bill is passed into constitution that would empower the state to have legal backing and authority over the operations of drones in the area. According to the legislation, the exclusive right of the state over these drone activities can only be interpreted through the help of the Rhode Island Airport Corporation.
The legislation was sponsored by Rep. Stephen R. Ucci and seconded by Rep. Arthur Corvese. Speaking of what the bill is set to achieve, it has been discussed that its main goal is to ensure that a single set of state-wide recognized rules is put in place, which would help in the administration, use, and operations of the drones (which could be standard unmanned aerial vehicles or other objects). This was also reiterated by the fact that a set of organized rules, which would be binding all over areas in the state, would be better recognized than local laws to the same effect.
“Drones are already here in Rhode Island and our laws need to reflect their presence. The Airport Corporation should be empowered to make sure that they are used safely so they don’t interfere with other air traffic and to develop rules so that they aren’t used to violate Rhode Islanders’ privacy. As we know, they are already being used by law enforcement agencies and photographers, and they could soon be widely employed for things like delivery. We should make sure the rules about their use in Rhode Island are clear and uniform throughout the state,” according to Representative Ucci.
The regulation, with regulation number 2016-H 7511A, was decided upon and recommended this year when a house study commission met to discuss what the stand of the state should be on unmanned aerial vehicles. Both representatives that would later spearhead and second the legislation, Ucci and Corvese respectively, also served on this commission.
Both legislators were of the opinion that the state needed to make swift attempts into regulating the operations of drones, given the fact that they were already in use and could be obtained from stores with little difficulty. They were also of the opinion that setting an early groundwork for drone operations in the area could lead to an early embrace of a drone’s advanced capabilities such as using the unmanned aerial devices to make swift and prompt deliveries, attracting business prospects to the state and also, a lot of side benefits to the economy.
Of the legislation, Corvese has also said, “There may be all kinds of things that drones could be doing for people in the near future, quickly and efficiently, but the bottom line right now is that there needs to be a clear set of rules that users understand, and that protects the privacy of our citizens.”
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