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House passes bill to regulate use of drones

SPRINGFIELD – A proposal that would regulate the use of drones by law enforcement agencies in Illinois has cleared the House.

House members voted 105-12 on Thursday. It has to go back to the Senate after some House changes.

Drones are sophisticated, unmanned aircraft that authorities are considering for aerial surveillance.

Rep. Ann Williams is a bill sponsor. The Chicago Democrat says the measure helps keep people's reasonable expectation of privacy.

The proposal would require police to obtain a search warrant before using a drone to collect information.

The legislation includes few exceptions, including when the Department of Homeland Security determines such surveillance is needed to prevent a terrorist attack. Other exceptions would be cases of imminent danger or preventing a prisoner escape.

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The bill is SB1587.

Online: www.ilga.gov

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