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Daily Archives: June 24, 2014

No drone package deliveries in Amazon’s future?

“The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) today published a Federal Register notice on its interpretation of the statutory special rules for model aircraft in the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012. The guidance comes after recent incidents involving the reckless use of unmanned model aircraft near airports and involving large crowds of people. Compliance with these rules for model aircraft operators has been required since the Act was signed on February 14, 2012, and the explanation provided today does not change that fact. The FAA is issuing the notice to provide clear guidance to model operators on the “do’s and don’ts” of flying safely in accordance with the Act and to answer many of the questions it has received regarding the scope and application of the rules. “We want people who fly model aircraft for recreation to enjoy their hobby – but to enjoy it safely,” said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “At DOT, we often say that safety is a shared responsibility, so to help, we are providing additional information today to make sure model aircraft operators know exactly what’s expected of them.” In the notice, the FAA restates the law’s definition of “model aircraft,” including requirements that they not interfere with manned aircraft, be flown within sight of the operator and be operated only for hobby or recreational purposes. The agency also explains that model aircraft operators flying within five miles of an airport must notify the airport operator and air traffic control tower. The FAA reaffirms that the Act’s model aircraft provisions apply only to hobby or recreation operations and do not authorize the use of model aircraft for commercial operations. The notice gives examples of hobby or recreation flights, as well as examples of operations that would not meet that definition. “We have a mandate to protect the American people in the air and on the ground, and the public expects us to carry out that mission,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta.  The law is clear that the FAA may take enforcement action against model aircraft operators who operate their aircraft in a manner that endangers the safety of the national airspace system. In the notice, the FAA explains that this enforcement authority is designed to protect users of the airspace as well as people and property on the ground. The FAA will be working with its inspectors and model aircraft operators across the country to ensure they give standard information to the public on how to satisfy these statutory requirements and avoid endangering the safety of the nation’s airspace. The FAA is also developing a plan to work with the law enforcement community to help them understand the FAA’s rules for unmanned aircraft systems, as well as the special statutory rules for model aircraft operators, so they can more effectively protect public safety…Any operation not conducted strictly for hobby or recreation purposes could not be operated under the special rule for model aircraft. Clearly, commercial operations would not be hobby or recreation flights. Likewise, flights that are in furtherance of a business, or incidental to a person’s business, would not be a hobby or recreation flight…While today’s notice is immediately effective, the agency welcomes comments from the public which may help further inform its analysis. The comment period for the notice will close 30 days from publication in the Federal Register.  >View the notice. See Section 336 of the 2012 FAA Modernization and Reform Act.”

Americans working harder, longer hours, with less time off

TechCrunch [snipped]: “Professionals, managers, and executives with a smartphone spend 72 hours a week (including the weekend) checking work e-mail. It’s become a nonstop world, especially for professional workers. But all employers are offering fewer vacation days and sick days than they used to. And those who are lucky enough to get paid vacation days aren’t using them. AContinue Reading

Health Insurance Rates and Rate Review

Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics – This Data Brief was written by Scott E. Harrington, PhD and Janet Weiner, MPH. “Health insurers participating in the new Marketplaces are filing rates for 2015 during the next few months. A few states have already released data on proposed rates. There is substantial economic, policy, and political interestContinue Reading

WaPo – The FBI maintains an 83-page glossary of Internet slang

Caitlin Dewey – “The Internet is full of strange and bewildering neologisms, which anyone but a text-addled teen would struggle to understand. So the fine, taxpayer-funded people of the FBI — apparently not content to trawl Urban Dictionary, like the rest of us — compiled a glossary of Internet slang.”

ABA Opinion – Lawyer Reviewing Jurors’ Internet Presence

Formal Opinion 466 April 24, 2014  – Lawyer Reviewing Jurors’ Internet Presence “Unless limited by law or court order, a lawyer may review a juror’s or potential juror’s Internet presence, which may include postings by the juror or potential juror in advance of and during a trial, but a lawyer may not communicate directly or throughContinue Reading

Review of the Pillar 3 disclosure requirements – consultative document

“The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision has today published for consultation a Review of the Pillar 3 disclosure requirements. The Committee has long recognised the importance of effective disclosure  to enhance market discipline and thereby promote a safe and sound banking system. However, the existing Basel framework Pillar 3 disclosure requirements, in particular those related to risk-weighted assets (RWA),Continue Reading

A closer look at ‘Map of the World’

Sean Lyngaas – “The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency might be the most important U.S. intelligence agency your mother’s never heard of. It has little public name recognition compared to the CIA or the National Security Agency and yet, with a sprawling Springfield, Va., campus and an ample budget, NGA is remaking how the intelligence community processesContinue Reading

Do the Benefits of College Still Outweigh the Costs?

Do the Benefits of College Still Outweigh the Costs? by: Jaison R. Abel and  Richard Deitz “In recent years, students have been paying more to attend college and earning less upon graduation—trends that have led many observers to question whether a college education remains a good investment. However, an analysis of the economic returns to college since the 1970s demonstrates that theContinue Reading

New GAO Reports – Combatting Terrorism, Explosive Detection Canines, Prepositioned Stocks, Private Health Insurance, Transportation Security Info Sharing

COMBATING TERRORISM: U.S. Efforts in Northwest Africa Would Be Strengthened by Enhanced Program Management, GAO-14-518: Published: Jun 24, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 24, 2014. EXPLOSIVES DETECTION CANINES: TSA Has Taken Steps to Analyze Canine Team Data and Assess the Effectiveness of Passenger Screening Canines, GAO-14-695T: Published: Jun 24, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 24, 2014. PREPOSITIONED STOCKS: DOD’s Strategic Policy and ImplementationContinue Reading

Library of Congress Recommended Format Specifications

“The Library of Congress announces the availability of its Recommended Format Specifications, a document describing the hierarchies of the physical and technical characteristics of creative formats, both analog and digital, which will best maximize the chances for preservation and continued accessibility of creative content. Creators and publishers have also begun to employ a wide arrayContinue Reading