Are we at risk of losing our civil liberties? Drone legislation passed in the dead of night and buried in the budget bill/Did you know??

 Dear Supporters:  

Below is the exchange I have had with Rep Tim Moffitt and Rep Chris Whitmire since August 9 regarding HB 1099 (An Act toRegulate the Use of Unmanned Aircraft Systems  As Recommended By the Legislative Research Commission’s Committee on Unmanned Aircraft Systems) and the NC Budget SB744,  (known as "The Current Operations and Capital Improvements Appropriations Act of 2014) that buried HB 1099 language on pages 227-231.  

While we support law enforcement and want to assure they have the tools they need to keep us safe, and we support free enterprise and  job creation, as defenders of liberty, ATP is concerned with provisions in this legislation and violations of our civil liberties as outlined in the posts  below.   Most troubling is Rep Moffitt's remarks on August 9 that "This particular bill (HB 1099) is more than likely not going anywhere" when on August 7th, two days before,   the language of HB 1099 was buried in the NC Senate Bill signed into law by Gov McCrory!  Did he not know that the bill he sponsored was enacted into law??  Our concerns have not been addressed. 

We have invited both Rep Moffitt and Rep Whitmire to our Thursday meetings.  So far, neither have accepted the invitation or given us a date convenient for them to 'explain' the above why this legislation was passed with no public input.   However, Rep Moffitt says he will get back to us next week.  We look forward to hearing from both  

We encourage you to study the information below and in other sources.   Our representatives need to be reminded by you that they work for We The People and their job is to protect our civil liberties.   

Please be assured, ATPAC will hold our elected officials accountable to the commitments and promises they made to We The People.  Our liberties are being whittled away without our knowledge.  Thank you again for you continued support.  Please, contact your reps and let them know what you think of  the provisions of this legislation and how this was handled with their constituents.  

Yours in Liberty

Jane and ATP Board

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Included is an accurate summary and the issues involved for your perusal:  August 12, 2014: AC-T: They got it wrong:  http://www.citizen-times.com/story/opinion/contributors/2014/08/12/got-wrong-drones/13953945/

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August 9 2014: To:  Rep Tim Moffitt, Rep Chris Whitmire

 
Dear Tim, 
 
After reading your response that the drone bill is going nowhere,  I did a bit of digging.  It seems that the drone bill, HB 1099,  did indeed pass but is disguised and buried in another bill!    It's conveniently buried in the budget bill - Senate Bill 744,  on pages 227, 228, 229, 230, 231, and signed by Gov McCrory on Aug 7, 2014. (See attached.)  Am I somehow mistaken?  Did you not know? You and Chris were sponsors and I believe worked on the committee to draft the language.   
 
I find this very troubling.  As our representatives, you are supposed to work for us.  You are supposed to uphold and protect our Constitution including our inalienable rights.  Why weren't your constituents informed of this?  There is much in this drone legislation that is cause for concern which was stated in the posts below.  There was no input form We The People. Was it because it is so controversial that it had to be buried in another bill?   'Let's sneak it in.  Folks are stupid.  We know better.' Sounds just like the typical political maneuver.  
 
Please, we need a response to this ASAP.   Again, thank you.  Anxious to hear from both of you.  
 
Jane Bilello  828 692 3117
cc:  ATP Board; iCaucus national
 
 


On Sat, Aug 9, 2014 at 2:48 PM, Rep. Tim Moffitt <Tim.Moffitt@ncleg.net> wrote:
Jane,

This particular bill is more than likely not going anywhere.  It would be a pleasure to meet and discuss this and other topics facing our State.  We are in Session August 14th and 15th.  September 4 may work better provided I don't have any conflicts.  I will confirm early next week.

Sincerely,

Representative Tim Moffitt
North Carolina House of Representatives
Western North Carolina Delegation Chair
116th District - Buncombe County
www.nchouse116.com<http://www.nchouse116.com/>

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August 9, 2014: To Representative Tim Moffitt and Representative Chris Whitmire

 From:  Asheville Tea Party

 Re: HB1099 and an Invitation To Come to Address Our Concerns

 Dear Tim and Chris,

 Hope this finds your well and rested. 

 I am writing to you as sponsors and supporters of HB 1099:  An Act toRegulate the Use of Unmanned Aircraft Systems  As Recommended By the Legislative Research Commission’s Committee on Unmanned Aircraft Systems.

 

The folks of North Carolina, and specifically here in your districts, need an explanation and a justification for some of the provisions in this bill.  It is my understanding from talking with Chris that the Federal government will dictate to NC how drones will be used unless NC steps in and exercises control.  (Abdicating state sovereignty to the Feds is why our nation is failing. But, that is another issue.)  

 

Without question, the public wants law enforcement to have the tools it needs to keep the bad guys incarcerated and to keep the public safe.  However, in the current political climate of government overreach, over-regulation, over-taxation, and social engineering, there is great mistrust of the government at all levels. 

 

*Section 1, Article 16B, Section C below (other than #3 that requires a warrant), needs further definition to assure that we are not losing more liberty for the sake of security.  There are too many instances where a warrant is not required.

 

For example, many questions arise with the gathering and storing of biometric data of law abiding citizens at public gatherings, either on public or private land.  Who decides which gatherings need to be ‘droned’?   Do we not have the freedom ‘to peaceably assemble’ and to be ‘secure in (our) persons’?  Where does this data go?  Under Provison #5, the private property owner has no right to object to photography or recording at public gatherings.  There is no provision for restraints on gathering biometric information on individuals who are targeted for no other reason than their attendance. 

 

Who is monitoring the monitors?  Is this one more creation of a bureaucracy of nameless, faceless, un-elected bureaucrats imposing more regulations and giving us no redress of grievances to our government? 

 

Then there is Section 4, Article 52 of Chapter 14 section (d) which states:

 

“This section shall not prohibit possession or usage of an unmanned aircraft or unmanned aircraft system that is authorized by federal law or regulation. “

 

 Does this not negate all of the provisions in HB 1099 to allow the feds to do whatever they wish to monitor the population?? 

 

These are some of our concerns.  There are others. 

 

Because we have many questions and deep concerns, we would sincerely like to have you attend one of our meetings to discuss all of this.  We meet at IHOP, 6PM, 229 Airport Road, Arden.   Thursday, August 14th ,or Thursday, September 4th would work for us.    

 

Thank you for your time.  We appreciate your service.  Please let me know if you can attend at your earliest convenience.   We look forward to your reply.

 

Sincerely,  

 

Jane Bilello, Asheville Tea Party
 
cc:  Asheville Tea Party Board
 
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FYI: April 2012:  FAA Releases Its List of Drone Certificates leaves Many Questions Unanswered: https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2012/04/faa-releases-its-list-drone-certificates-leaves-many-questions-unanswered

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Excerpt from HB 1099: Section 1, Article 16B, Section C

*(c) Law Enforcement Exceptions. – Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (b) of 
   this section, the use of unmanned aircraft systems by law enforcement agencies of the State or a 
   political subdivision of the State is not prohibited in the following instances: 
·          (1) To counter a high risk of a terrorist attack by a specific individual or 
  organization if the United States Secretary of Homeland Security or the 
   Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Public Safety determines that 
   credible intelligence indicates that such a risk exists. 
·       (2) To conduct surveillance in an area that is within a law enforcement officer's 
 plain view when the officer is in a location the officer has a legal right to be. 
1.    (3) If the law enforcement agency first obtains a search warrant authorizing the 
 use of an unmanned aircraft system. 
·       (4) If the law enforcement agency possesses reasonable suspicion that, under 
 particular circumstances, swift action is needed to prevent imminent danger 
 to life or serious damage to property, to forestall the imminent escape of a 
 suspect or the destruction of evidence, to conduct pursuit of an escapee or 
 suspect, or to facilitate the search for a missing person. 
·       (5) To photograph gatherings to which the general public is invited on public or private land.

House Bill 1099 http://ncleg.net/Sessions/2013/Bills/House/PDF/H1099v2.pdf

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Senate Bill 744 Ratified.  

REGULATION OF UNMANNED AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS
SECTION 34.30.(a) Chapter 15A of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new Article to read:
"Article 16B.
"Use of Unmanned Aircraft Systems.
"§ 15A-300.1. Restrictions on use of unmanned aircraft systems.
(a) Definitions. – The following definitions apply to this Article:
(1) Manned aircraft. – An aircraft, as defined in G.S. 63-1, that is operated with a person in or on the aircraft.
(2) Model aircraft. – An aircraft, as defined in G.S. 63-1, that is mechanically driven or launched into flight and that meets all of the following requirements:
a. Is flown solely for hobby or recreational purposes.
b. Is not used for payment, consideration, gratuity, or benefit, directly or indirectly charged, demanded, received, or collected, by any person for the use of the aircraft or any photographic or video image produced by the aircraft.
(3) Unmanned aircraft. – An aircraft, as defined in G.S. 63-1, that is operated without the possibility of human intervention from within or on the aircraft and that does not meet the definition of model aircraft.
(4) Unmanned aircraft system. – An unmanned aircraft and associated elements, including communication links and components that control the unmanned aircraft that are required for the pilot in command to operate safely and efficiently in the national airspace system.
(b) General Prohibitions. – Except as otherwise provided in this section, no person, entity, or State agency shall use an unmanned aircraft system to do any of the following:
(1) Conduct surveillance of:
a. A person or a dwelling occupied by a person and that dwelling's curtilage without the person's consent.
b. Private real property without the consent of the owner, easement holder, or lessee of the property.
(2) Photograph an individual, without the individual's consent, for the purpose of publishing or otherwise publicly disseminating the photograph. This subdivision shall not apply to newsgathering, newsworthy events, or events or places to which the general public is invited.
(c) Law Enforcement Exceptions. – Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (b) of this section, the use of unmanned aircraft systems by law enforcement agencies of the State or a political subdivision of the State is not prohibited in the following instances:
(1) To counter a high risk of a terrorist attack by a specific individual or organization if the United States Secretary of Homeland Security or the
Page 228 Session Law 2014-100 Senate Bill 744-Ratified
Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Public Safety determines that credible intelligence indicates that such a risk exists.
(2) To conduct surveillance in an area that is within a law enforcement officer's plain view when the officer is in a location the officer has a legal right to be.
(3) If the law enforcement agency first obtains a search warrant authorizing the use of an unmanned aircraft system.
(4) If the law enforcement agency possesses reasonable suspicion that, under particular circumstances, swift action is needed to prevent imminent danger to life or serious damage to property, to forestall the imminent escape of a suspect or the destruction of evidence, to conduct pursuit of an escapee or suspect, or to facilitate the search for a missing person.
(5) To photograph gatherings to which the general public is invited on public or private land.
(d) Limitations on Use of Special Imaging Technology. – Commercial and private unmanned aircraft systems may be equipped with infrared or other thermal imaging technology subject to the provisions of this subsection. Infrared or other similar thermal imaging technology equipment shall be for the sole purpose of scientific investigation; scientific research; mapping and evaluating the earth's surface, including terrain and surface water bodies and other features; investigation or evaluation of crops, livestock, or farming operations; investigation of forests and forest management; and other similar investigations of vegetation or wildlife.
(e) Any person who is the subject of unwarranted surveillance, or whose photograph is taken in violation of the provisions of this section, shall have a civil cause of action against the person, entity, or State agency that conducts the surveillance or that uses an unmanned aircraft system to photograph for the purpose of publishing or otherwise disseminating the photograph. In lieu of actual damages, the person whose photograph is taken may elect to recover five thousand dollars ($5,000) for each photograph or video that is published or otherwise disseminated, as well as reasonable costs and attorneys' fees and injunctive or other relief as determined by the court.
(f) Evidence obtained or collected in violation of this section is not admissible as evidence in a criminal prosecution in any court of law in this State except when obtained or collected under the objectively reasonable, good-faith belief that the actions were lawful.
"§ 15A-300.2. Regulation of launch and recovery sites.
(a) No unmanned aircraft system may be launched or recovered from any State or private property without consent.
(b) A unit of local government may adopt an ordinance to regulate the use of the local government's property for the launch or recovery of unmanned aircraft systems."
SECTION 34.30.(b) Chapter 14 of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new Article to read:
"Article 2F.
"Crimes by Unmanned Aircraft Systems.
"§ 14-7.45. Crimes committed by use of unmanned aircraft systems.
All crimes committed by use of an unmanned aircraft system, as defined in G.S. 15A-300.1, while in flight over this State shall be governed by the laws of this State, and the question of whether the conduct by an unmanned aircraft system while in flight over this State constitutes a crime by the owner of the unmanned aircraft system shall be determined by the laws of this State."
SECTION 34.30.(c) Article 36 of Chapter 14 of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new section to read:
"§ 14-280.3. Interference with manned aircraft by unmanned aircraft systems.
(a) Any person who willfully damages, disrupts the operation of, or otherwise interferes with a manned aircraft through use of an unmanned aircraft system, while the manned aircraft is taking off, landing, in flight, or otherwise in motion, is guilty of a Class H felony.
(b) The following definitions apply to this section:
(1) Manned aircraft. – As defined in G.S. 15A-300.1.
(2) Unmanned aircraft system. – As defined in G.S. 15A-300.1."
SECTION 34.30.(d) Article 52 of Chapter 14 of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new section to read:
"§ 14-401.24. Unlawful possession and use of unmanned aircraft systems.
Senate Bill 744-Ratified Session Law 2014-100 Page 229
(a) It shall be a Class E felony for any person to possess or use an unmanned aircraft or unmanned aircraft system that has a weapon attached.
(b) It shall be a Class 1 misdemeanor for any person to fish or to hunt using an unmanned aircraft system.
(c) The following definitions apply to this section:
(1) To fish. – As defined in G.S. 113-130.
(2) To hunt. – As defined in G.S. 113-130.
(3) Unmanned aircraft. – As defined in G.S. 15A-300.1.
(4) Unmanned aircraft system. – As defined in G.S. 15A-300.1.
(5) Weapon. – Those weapons specified in G.S. 14-269, 14-269.2, 14-284.1, or 14-288.8 and any other object capable of inflicting serious bodily injury or death when used as a weapon.
(d) This section shall not prohibit possession or usage of an unmanned aircraft or unmanned aircraft system that is authorized by federal law or regulation."
SECTION 34.30.(e) Article 52 of Chapter 14 of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new section to read:
"§ 14-401.25. Unlawful distribution of images.
It shall be a Class A1 misdemeanor to publish or disseminate, for any purpose, recorded images taken by a person or non-law enforcement entity through the use of infrared or other similar thermal imaging technology attached to an unmanned aircraft system, as defined in G.S. 15A-300.1, and revealing individuals, materials, or activities inside of a structure without the consent of the property owner."
SECTION 34.30.(f) G.S. 113-295 reads as rewritten:
"§ 113-295. Unlawful harassment of persons taking wildlife resources.
(a) It is unlawful for a person to interfere intentionally with the lawful taking of wildlife resources or to drive, harass, or intentionally disturb any wildlife resources for the purpose of disrupting the lawful taking of wildlife resources. It is unlawful to take or abuse property, equipment, or hunting dogs that are being used for the lawful taking of wildlife resources. This subsection does not apply to a person who incidentally interferes with the taking of wildlife resources while using the land for other lawful activity such as agriculture, mining, or recreation. This subsection also does not apply to activity by a person on land he owns or leases.
Violation of this subsection is a Class 2 misdemeanor for a first conviction and a Class 1 misdemeanor for a second or subsequent conviction.
(a1) It is unlawful to use an unmanned aircraft system, as defined in G.S. 15A-300.1, to violate subsection (a) of this section. Violation of this subsection is a Class 1 misdemeanor.
(b) The Wildlife Resources Commission may, either before or after the institution of any other action or proceeding authorized by this section, institute a civil action for injunctive relief to restrain a violation or threatened violation of subsection (a) of this section pursuant to G.S. 113-131. The action shall be brought in the superior court of the county in which the violation or threatened violation is occurring or about to occur and shall be in the name of the State upon the relation of the Wildlife Resources Commission. The court, in issuing any final order in any action brought pursuant to this subsection may, in its discretion, award costs of litigation including reasonable attorney and expert-witness fees to any party."
SECTION 34.30.(g) Chapter 63 of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new Article to read:
"Article 10.
"Operation of Unmanned Aircraft Systems.
"§ 63-95. Training required for operation of unmanned aircraft systems.
(a) As used in this Article, the term "Division" means the Division of Aviation of the Department of Transportation.
(b) The Division shall develop a knowledge and skills test for operating an unmanned aircraft system that complies with all applicable State and federal regulations and shall provide for administration of the test. The Division may permit a person, including an agency of this State, an agency of a political subdivision of this State, an employer, or a private training facility, to administer the test developed pursuant to this subsection, provided the test is the same as that administered by the Division and complies with all applicable State and federal regulations.
Page 230 Session Law 2014-100 Senate Bill 744-Ratified
(c) No agent or agency of the State, or agent or agency of a political subdivision of the State, may operate an unmanned aircraft system within the State without completion of the test set forth in subsection (b) of this section.
"§ 63-96. License required for commercial operation of unmanned aircraft systems.
(a) No person shall operate an unmanned aircraft system, as defined in G.S. 15A-300.1, in this State for commercial purposes unless the person is in possession of a license issued by the Division valid for the unmanned aircraft system being operated. Application for such license shall be made in the manner provided by the Division. Unless suspended or revoked, the license shall be effective for a period to be established by the Division not exceeding eight years.
(b) No person shall be issued a license under this section unless all of the following apply:
(1) The person is at least 18 years of age.
(2) The person possesses a valid drivers license issued by any state or territory of the United States or the District of Columbia.
(3) The person has passed the knowledge and skills test for operating an unmanned aircraft system as prescribed in G.S. 63-95(b).
(4) The person has satisfied all other applicable requirements of this Article or federal regulation.
(c) A license to operate an unmanned aircraft system for commercial purposes shall not be issued to a person while the person's license to operate an unmanned aircraft system is suspended, revoked, or cancelled in any state.
(d) The Division shall develop and administer a program to license operators of unmanned aircraft systems for commercial purposes. The program must include the following components:
(1) A system for classifying unmanned aircraft systems based on characteristics determined to be appropriate by the Division.
(2) A fee structure for licenses.
(3) A license application process.
(4) Technical guidance for complying with program requirements.
(5) Criteria under which the Division may suspend or revoke a license.
(6) Criteria under which the Division may waive licensure requirements for applicants currently holding a valid license to operate unmanned aircraft systems issued by another state or territory of the United States, the District of Columbia, or the United States.
(7) A designation of the geographic area within which a licensee shall be authorized to operate an unmanned aircraft system.
(8) Requirements pertaining to the collection, use, and retention of data by licensees obtained through the operation of unmanned aircraft systems, to be established in consultation with the State Chief Information Officer.
(9) Requirements for the marking of each unmanned aircraft system operated pursuant to a license issued under this section sufficient to permit identification of the owner of the system and the person licensed to operate it.
(10) A system for providing agencies that conduct other operations within regulated airspace with the identity and contact information of licensees and the geographic areas within which the licensee is permitted to operate an unmanned aircraft system.
(e) A person who operates an unmanned aircraft system for commercial purposes other than as permitted under this section shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.
(f) The Division may issue rules and regulations to implement the provisions of this section."
SECTION 34.30.(h) The Division of Aviation of the Department of Transportation shall develop and implement the knowledge and skills test required by G.S. 63-95, as enacted in subsection (g) of this section, no later than May 31, 2015, and shall report to the Joint Legislative Transportation Oversight Committee on the status of implementation by June 15, 2015.
SECTION 34.30.(i) The Division of Aviation of the Department of Transportation shall immediately begin developing the licensing system for commercial operation required by
Senate Bill 744-Ratified Session Law 2014-100 Page 231
G.S. 63-96, as enacted in subsection (g) of this section, and shall ensure that the system complies with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) guidelines on commercial operation, as those guidelines become available. Within 60 days of issuance of the FAA guidelines and authorization by the FAA for commercial operations to begin, the Division shall implement the licensing system required by G.S. 63-96, as enacted in subsection (g) of this section.
SECTION 34.30.(j) No operation of unmanned aircraft systems by agents or agencies of the State, or agents or agencies of a political subdivision of the State, shall be authorized in this State until the knowledge and skills test required by G.S. 63-95, as enacted in subsection (g) of this section, has been implemented.
No operation of unmanned aircraft systems for commercial purposes shall be authorized in this State until the FAA has authorized commercial operations and the licensing system required by G.S. 63-96, as enacted in subsection (g) of this section, has been implemented.
SECTION 34.30.(k) The Division of Aviation of the Department of Transportation shall use funds appropriated in this act to the Division to cover the administration costs incurred from developing and implementing the knowledge and skills test and licensing system for commercial operation required by this section.
SECTION 34.30.(l) Subsection (a) of this section becomes effective October 1, 2014, and applies to acts occurring on or after that date. Subsections (b), (c), (d), (e), and (f) of this section become effective December 1, 2014, and apply to offenses committed on or after that date. The remainder of this section is effective when it becomes law.
PART XXXV. SALARIES AND BENEFITS
GOVERNOR AND COUNCIL OF STATE
SECTION 35.1.(a) G.S. 147-11(a) reads as rewritten:
"(a) The salary of the Governor shall be one hundred forty-one thousand two hundred sixty-five dollars ($141,265) one hundred forty-two thousand two hundred sixty-five dollars ($142,265) annually, payable monthly."
SECTION 35.1.(b) Section 35.1(b) of S.L. 2013-360 reads as rewritten:
"SECTION 35.1.(b) Effective for the 2013-2015 fiscal biennium, the The annual salaries for members of the Council of State, payable monthly, shall remain unchanged be increased by one thousand dollars ($1,000) as follows:
Council of State Annual Salary
Lieutenant Governor $124,676$125,676
Attorney General 124,676125,676
Secretary of State 124,676125,676
State Treasurer 124,676125,676
State Auditor 124,676125,676
Superintendent of Public Instruction 124,676125,676
Agriculture Commissioner 124,676125,676
Insurance Commissioner 124,676125,676 Labor Commissioner 124,676125,676"
SECTION 35.1.(c) Section 35.1(a) of S.L. 2013-360 is repealed.
CERTAIN EXECUTIVE BRANCH OFFICIALS
SECTION 35.2. Section 35.2 of S.L. 2013-360 reads as rewritten:
"SECTION 35.2. Effective for the 2013-2015 fiscal biennium, the The annual salaries, payable monthly, for the following executive branch officials shall remain unchanged be increased by one thousand dollars ($1,000) as follows:
Executive Branch Officials Annual Salary
Chairman, Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission $110,868$111,868
State Controller 155,159156,159
Commissioner of Banks 124,676125,676
Chair, Board of Review, Division of Employment Security 122,255123,255
Members, Board of Review, Division of Employment Security 120,737121,737
Chairman, Parole Commission 101,235102,235
Members of the Parole Commission 93,46494,464
Chairman, Utilities Commission 138,849139,849
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http://www.news-record.com/news/government/article_095b7f8c-1f6c-11e4-80e0-0017a43b2370.html

 http://www.c-span.org/video/?312601-3/future-drone-technology-civilian-use