Drones; moratorium on use of unmanned aircraft systems by state or local government department, etc. (HB2012)

Introduced By

Del. Ben Cline (R-Amherst) with support from co-patrons Del. Todd Gilbert (R-Woodstock), Del. Steve Landes (R-Weyers Cave), Del. Bob Marshall (R-Manassas), Del. Rick Morris (R-Carrollton), and Del. David Ramadan (R-South Riding)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Drones; moratorium. Places a moratorium on the use of unmanned aircraft systems by state and local law enforcement and regulatory entities until July 1, 2014. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Passed


  • 01/09/2013 Committee
  • 01/09/2013 Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/09/13 13103615D
  • 01/09/2013 Referred to Committee for Courts of Justice
  • 01/15/2013 Assigned Courts sub: #1 Criminal
  • 01/21/2013 Impact statement from DPB (HB2012)
  • 01/30/2013 Subcommittee recommends reporting with amendment(s) (7-Y 2-N)
  • 02/01/2013 Reported from Courts of Justice with substitute (9-Y 4-N) (see vote tally)
  • 02/01/2013 Committee substitute printed 13104704D-H1
  • 02/01/2013 Incorporates HB1616
  • 02/02/2013 Read first time
  • 02/04/2013 Read second time
  • 02/04/2013 Committee substitute agreed to 13104704D-H1
  • 02/04/2013 Amendment by Delegate McClellan agreed to
  • 02/04/2013 Motion to rerefer to Courts of Justice committee rejected
  • 02/04/2013 Engrossed by House - committee substitute with amendment HB2012EH1
  • 02/04/2013 Printed as engrossed 13104704D-EH1
  • 02/04/2013 Engrossed bill reprinted 13104704D-EH1
  • 02/05/2013 Read third time and passed House (83-Y 16-N)
  • 02/05/2013 VOTE: PASSAGE (83-Y 16-N) (see vote tally)
  • 02/06/2013 Constitutional reading dispensed
  • 02/06/2013 Referred to Committee for Courts of Justice
  • 02/07/2013 Impact statement from DPB (HB2012EH1)
  • 02/13/2013 Reported from Courts of Justice with substitute (15-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
  • 02/13/2013 Committee substitute printed 13105220D-S1
  • 02/15/2013 Constitutional reading dispensed (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
  • 02/18/2013 Read third time
  • 02/18/2013 Reading of substitute waived
  • 02/18/2013 Committee substitute agreed to 13105220D-S1
  • 02/18/2013 Engrossed by Senate - committee substitute HB2012S1
  • 02/18/2013 Passed Senate with substitute (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
  • 02/19/2013 Placed on Calendar
  • 02/19/2013 Passed by for the day
  • 02/21/2013 Senate substitute rejected by House 13105220D-S1 (0-Y 97-N)
  • 02/21/2013 VOTE: REJECTED (0-Y 97-N) (see vote tally)
  • 02/21/2013 Impact statement from DPB (HB2012S1)
  • 02/21/2013 Senate insisted on substitute (39-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
  • 02/21/2013 Senate requested conference committee
  • 02/21/2013 House acceded to request
  • 02/21/2013 Conferees appointed by Senate
  • 02/21/2013 Senators: Reeves, Obenshain, McEachin
  • 02/21/2013 Conferees appointed by House
  • 02/21/2013 Delegates: Cline, Gilbert, Toscano
  • 02/22/2013 Conference substitute printed 13105471D-H2
  • 02/22/2013 Conference report agreed to by Senate (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
  • 02/22/2013 Conference report agreed to by House (93-Y 4-N)
  • 02/22/2013 VOTE: ADOPTION (93-Y 4-N) (see vote tally)
  • 03/04/2013 Enrolled
  • 03/04/2013 Bill text as passed House and Senate (HB2012ER)
  • 03/04/2013 Signed by President
  • 03/05/2013 Signed by Speaker
  • 03/06/2013 Impact statement from DPB (HB2012ER)
  • 03/20/2013 Governor's recommendation received by House
  • 03/20/2013 Governor's substitute printed 13105669D-H3
  • 04/02/2013 Placed on Calendar
  • 04/03/2013 G Approved by Governor-Chapter 755 (effective 7/1/13)
  • 04/03/2013 House concurred in Governor's recommendation (96-Y 1-N)
  • 04/03/2013 VOTE: ADOPTION (96-Y 1-N) (see vote tally)
  • 04/03/2013 Senate concurred in Governor's recommendation (32-Y 8-N) (see vote tally)
  • 04/03/2013 G Governor's recommendation adopted
  • 04/03/2013 Reenrolled
  • 04/03/2013 Reenrolled bill text (HB2012ER2)
  • 04/03/2013 Signed by Speaker as reenrolled
  • 04/03/2013 Signed by President as reenrolled
  • 04/03/2013 Enacted, Chapter 755 (effective 7/1/13)
  • 04/03/2013 G Acts of Assembly Chapter text (CHAP0755)


This bill was discussed on the floor of the General Assembly. Below is all of the video that we have of that discussion, 5 clips in all, totaling 21 minutes.


ACLU-VA Privacy Rights, tracking this bill in Photosynthesis, notes:

The ACLU of Virginia strongly supports legislation that regulates the use of drones in Virginia and preserves the privacy rights of Virginia citizens.

ACLU-VA Legislative Agenda, tracking this bill in Photosynthesis, notes:

The ACLU of Virginia strongly supports this legislation, which places a two year moratorium on the use of drones in Virginia. Unregulated use of drone technology by state and local government agencies threatens to eviscerate the Fourth Amendment's protection from illegal search and seizure. Additionally, without limits, the use of drones could turn the Commonwealth into a surveillance state and produce chilling effects on protected First Amendment activities. A moratorium on the use of drones allows legislators and various stakeholders, including the public, to debate and draft legislation that balances privacy protections and public safety in a reasonable manner.