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Local Township Unmanned Aircraft Ordinance

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Youngbill, Aug 18, 2015.

  1. Youngbill

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  2. LuvMyTJ

    LuvMyTJ ADMINISTRATOR
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    Unenforceable. A court challenge would show them why.
     
  3. bobmyers

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    Living in NJ for 23 years I can tell you that the hundreds of local townships in both states that pick up on everything that they can regulate if it will produce income for the township. It is not about model aircraft or drones, it is about revenue and they will jump on it. They know that most people wont challenge a case this small legally -- so it is open season.
     
  4. BlackOpsTeamster

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    I have to think the Board members either didn't run this past the County or Township attorney or they did and he/she is just collecting a paycheck. ;)
    BOT
     
  5. bobmyers

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    yes they did, he signed the ordinanceo_Oo_O
     
  6. BlackOpsTeamster

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    I see where board member Mr. Proctor is an attorney but unsure if he is the actual counsel for the Township. In any event he at least should have known better. I tend to lean towards your supposition that it's probably more about the money than anything.
    BOT
     
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  7. SteveMann

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    Amateur legislators like this define the word "clueless".

    Once the model aircraft leaves the ground, it is out of their jurisdiction.

    Yes, any first year lawyer could get anyone charged with this ordinance off, but even if the town council knew it was unenforceable and if it stops drone flights, then they are happy.
     
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  8. Youngbill

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    I just spent the last hour reading articles that come up when I google "township drone". It's comical reading some of the meeting minutes from township council meetings. I'm amazed that these people actually collect a pay check!
     
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  9. tcope

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    Throw a paper airplane anywhere except your own property and you are in violation of this (illegal) "law". Also applies to Frisbees, footballs, baseballs, etc.

    What a bunch of bafoons.
     
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  10. tcope

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    Their response :


    Mr. Copeland:

    Thank you for your e-mail. The Chairman of the Board of Supervisors requested that I respond to your e-mail. The Board believes a property owner in the Township has the right to the quiet use and enjoyment of their property. The ordinance was reviewed by the Township Solicitor.

    Rick Smith
    Township Manager
     
  11. Youngbill

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    What did you send them?
     
  12. SteveMann

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    Quote 49 USC ยง 40103 - 'Sovereignty and use of airspace' to him. [link]
    The town may limit where you can take off or land on property where they have jurisdiction, but they may not regulate anything related to flight.

    Most amateur legislators and clueless civil lawyers point to 49 USC 40103(a)(2): "A citizen of the United States has a public right of transit through the navigable airspace. ". Then they point to unrelated anecdotal "proof" that navigable airspace begins at 500 ft. And they would be wrong. Navigable airspace is not defined anywhere in law. The FAA says that navigable airspace is any airspace where aircraft may navigate safely. This is why helicopters may operate below 500 ft - in navigable airspace. Also, drones are defined by the FAA as aircraft, and they are currently recommended to stay below 400 ft, establishing that flight region as navigable airspace. They may be confused with controlled airspace which generally begins at 500 ft or higher in some areas. Controlled airspace is where ATC radar services are available, but regulated airspace begins as soon as the aircraft leaves the ground.

    Maybe you should send a letter to the newspaper explaining why this law is unenforceable and will likely be challenged in court, at the town's expense.
     
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  13. tcope

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    I pointed out that US Code stated that the Federal Government was in charge of all airspace and that only the FAA could regulate airspace.. I also pointed out that their ordinance was broad and vague enough to cover a wide range of "aerial vehicles".

    My response to their email listed above was to ask if the Township had noise ordinances and if so, why those were not being used to control noise if it was an issue. I than again pointed out that the ordinance was clearly illegal as only the FAA could regulate airspace. I suspect it will be the last I hear from them. I think it's clear that they don't care of the law is legal or not... they will just continue to make up any laws that they want. After all, what do they have to lose if they are not legal. I've come to realize that these idiots don't care if what they do is legal or not.
     
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  14. SteveMann

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    In my experience, no. At that level they don't give a **** if the ordinance is illegal from the start. They know that challenging it in court will take a lot of money and many years of litigation, and the odds are they will be out of office by then, so the final disposal won't affect them in the least - even if the town has to pay legal fees. In the meanwhile they get a gold star on their projects folder. That's why a letter to the editor of the local newspaper is more effective.
     
  15. tcope

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    I agree 100% but it would not take a lot to get a ruling on it. If you were charged you could fight the charges. However, this is why they won't readily charge someone, they will just threaten the person with the charge and fine. The other way is to file suit against the township. While this would take a little longer and cost some money, it should only take a couple of months. In the end it won't cost the defense or township much as they are paying those fees already. This is how our system is set up.
     
  16. Andy Collins

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    So do you pay a $100 penalty, or spend $25k (or much, much more) trying to fight it,,they know they win by default.

    Never get in a legal battle with someone that has more money than you do,
     
  17. LUISMARTINEZ

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    100% AGREE.
     
  18. kirk2579

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    while not the same Ohio has a similar issue in that local laws and entities don't care about legalities.

    10 years ago Ohio enacted a state wide ban on local rules and laws regarding firearms and carry.
    In other words it is illegal for ANY local government to make "special gun laws"

    State law trump's ALL else in Ohio, except federal

    We still sue local entities today , 10 years later about this.
    In fact while in a local park last week seting up p2v2+ to video my daughter reception I was told no drones permitted by the park police. I said Ok, show me. They did in booklet published 6 months ago. I put drone away and mentioned levy coming up!

    anyhow while looking at rules it clearly stated no firearms allowed in park etc.
    I mentioned to officers that that , no firearms, is illegal and he acknowledged it was.
    we then discussed what we carry etc for a bit...

    make up the rules, most folks say OK and leave it at that.
     
  19. hit-n-run

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    If my neighbor bought a drone, and flew it repeatedly over my house at low altitude, I would consider it quite a nuisance.
    What if you lived in a house that was historic or architecturally significant and quads were often orbiting it, without an ordinance like this, there would be nothing for law enforcement could say.
    I doubt this was enacted to target hobbyists, everyone is still trying to figure this new technology out.
     
  20. LuvMyTJ

    LuvMyTJ ADMINISTRATOR
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    See what I did there? ;)