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House of Representatives
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session


Posted: December 16, 2014 01:42 PM
From: Representative Angel Cruz
To: All House members
Subject: Drone Legislation (Former HB 961)
In the near future, I will be reintroducing legislation that would amend Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes by creating a new section that would require law enforcement officials to obtain an authorization order from a superior court judge before legally using unmanned aircraft surveillance in the Commonwealth. My legislation is modeled off of current law that requires law enforcement officials to obtain authorization orders from judges before intercepting wire, electronic, or oral communications.

The purpose of my legislation is to protect Pennsylvanians from invasions of privacy by law enforcement officials. Under authorization given by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), unmanned aircraft, or what are more commonly referred to as “drones,” are currently being used by hundreds of police and other government agencies throughout the United States.

Furthermore, the FAA is being sued because of its refusal to disclose which agencies have been granted authorization to use these drones and what their purposes are. My legislation ensures that drones cannot be used in Pennsylvania without reasonable cause given for their use and proper approval given from the court system.

Introduced as HB409