Minnesota Lawmakers Focus on Growing Drone Use

December 17, 2014

Lawyers, privacy advocates and hobby drone pilots are urging Minnesota lawmakers to set some rules for the small unmanned aircrafts.

Drones are already being used in Minnesota to aid aerospace research, monitor crops and for the thrill of the flight. A panel of House and Senate lawmakers discussed their growing use Friday.

Twenty states have passed regulations for drones. The Federal Aviation Administration is crafting rules for commercial use, but those still may be a year or more away.

Several lawmakers say they may need to put limits on how and when police can use drones for surveillance, citing privacy concerns. Jim Franklin, executive director of the Minnesota Sheriff’s Association, says no law enforcement agencies in the state currently have the technology.

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