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Old 05-07-2019, 12:03 PM
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
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Originally Posted by franklin_m View Post
Yep. And yet AMA deludes themselves into thinking they have influence. Within the last couple days, they posted in their government blog that they co-chaired a meeting. Out of that they made this statement:

"Regulations for recreational drone operators should be easy for the public to understand and rigorous enough to ensure safety. We are proud to have led the first meeting of stakeholders to help the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) craft this exact approach. At the meeting we also discussed safety and knowledge tests for recreational model aircraft and drone operators, and the process for recognizing community-based organizations. We look forward to working with the recreational drone community and the FAA to strike the appropriate balance between innovation and safety." (note 1)

Some observations:
- This isn't a meeting at the "big kids" table. Note the stakeholders that are NOT there: Airlines, ALPA, etc.; police, fire, and emergency responder groups; media groups; Amazon Prime Air, Google, etc.; DoD, DHS, etc.
- As it's operating in isolation, it's at best a "wish list" or perhaps wishful thinking

Even taking apart their statement... it's largely a "master of the obvious" type thing. "Needs to be simple and easy to understand" and "strike the appropriate balance between innovation and safety" .... well duh. Sure glad we spent member money on travel and hotels to come up with those pearls of wisdom. Otherwise, they're just talking about what they discussed. AMA has been "talking" about a lot of things. What were the RESULTS of those discussions? A point curiously absent from AMA's release. And lastly, I think the statement exposes the only thing AMA cares about at this point, perhaps because they might realize it's the only thing they might actually achieve, and that's the CBO recogniztion. If you read 349, it defines criteria and directs FAA to create a process. So what is there to discuss here? I mean it's pretty clear in the language already. So what's AMA "discussing?" In the end, being recognized as a CBO will be a hollow victory, for it doesn't bring AMA any tangible authority. It'll look good on the wall, and the marketing major ED will publicize the crap out of it, but in the end it will mean little in practical terms.

I see this as AMA trying to grasp anything, no matter small, to show they're doing SOMETHING. For further proof, look no further than their government blog post talking about the Utah legislation that says folks have to use B4UFly. Whoopie do. Similarly with the post about letters of agreement. Call me crazy, but isn't that just doing what the law said to do? How is that a result of AMA's "influence?"

Note 1:
I have read elsewhere, that the AMA has a pretty good lobby with congress, which motivates modelers to do what they feel like doing, because they have the idea that the FAA has absolutely no ability to enforce the laws. Anybody can buy a transmitter, receiver, LiPo batteries, and out-runner motor, and build something from a bunch of sticks with simple plans (S.P.A.D.s, for example). Put a video down link on that, and poof.. An electric drone that does the same things as a DJI, only cheaper and no software to deal with.

So, what will the FAA do about this? What can they do? And I still have yet to hear or read about this new upcoming test requirement.... Maybe all of this will come to requiring a Part 107 license for ALL operators, even at the local club level. Who knows?
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