Paradise Valley Drone Ordinance on Par with New FAA Regulations

Soon after Paradise Valley passed a drone ordinance of its own, the first of its kind in the Valley, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced new regulations for drone owners, and now council members in Phoenix are weighing drone restrictions for the city.

Residents of Paradise Valley are allowed to use drones privately on their own property without restrictions, but are not allowed to use the devices on private property without permission. Those who do so could be charged with trespassing.

In terms of commercial use, the Paradise Valley ordinance states that Arizonans must register their devices with police first, a rule that aligns with the FAA’s new drone regulations.

The FAA requires registration on a government website for all drones weighing more than .5 pounds. A unique identification number will be issued, which then must be written or attached to registered devices.

Officials from the FAA hope these restrictions will minimize an inundation of drones and keep drone owners accountable for their use of this technology, while others, including officials from the Academy of Model Aeronautics, said these regulations cause unnecessary burden to drone owners, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Phoenix City Council is considering proposed rules regarding the uses of unmanned aircraft systems within the city, as well as guidelines for how Phoenix agencies should use drones, according to The Arizona Republic.

The proposed ordinance by Councilmen Sal DiCiccio and Michael Nowakowski focuses on protecting privacy and limiting government surveillance.

Sections of the proposed regulations include prohibiting:

  • Operating a drone within five miles of an airport without permission.
  • Using a drone as a weapon or operating a drone recklessly, including the usage of these devices to kill birds or animals.
  • The usage of a drone to knowingly record or view another person without consent in situations prohibited by state law.

Regulations for drone use are still very new. Depending on what city council members in Phoenix decide, these rules could be a helpful tool in protecting privacy and ensuring public safety or they could interfere with development of drone technology.

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