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Congress debates national drone ban

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RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) -Lawmakers and public concern over the use of drones continues to grow as the issue gets taken up to Washington D.C.

The House Science Subcommittee on Oversight held a hearing Friday morning to discuss the use of drones on a national level.

Just last year, Homeland Security announced a program that would accelerate the use of drones in law enforcement. However, the hearings today focused on the future of drones in the U.S. airspace.

Some lawmakers expressed their concerns over the challenges the drone program, and unmanned aerial vehicles could have toward public privacy.

“The American public is just frightened frankly, about the use of the UAVS to possibly have invasions of their privacy, invasions of their civil rights,” said Paul Broun, Georgia Representative (R).

The Federal Aviation Administration promised to look into privacy issues. On Thursday, they announced they are accepting applications from states and universities alike to host drone test sites.

In Virginia a two-year ban on law enforcement using unmanned aircrafts was read in the Senate, on Friday. That bill is numbered HB2012 and you can track it on the general assembly website here.