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Coverage of ways unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are changing how state and local government collects data on physical infrastructure, maps jurisdictions via GIS and monitors public safety from the sky. Also includes stories about efforts by private-sector companies and education institutions to improve how drones can better help government deliver services.

Officers with the Chico Police Department used a drone to make an arrest Friday when a man allegedly ran away from officers and into the brush near Little Chico Creek.
So-called “TASER drones” have been proposed as one way to secure schools. An interview with the CEO of public safety tech vendor Axon illustrates how the situation is more complicated than deploying armed robots.
The San Antonio-based startup company Darkhive last year won $1 million in pre-seed funding as it shopped around small, 3D-printed drones.
The Chula Vista Police Department has been leveraging a fleet of 29 unmanned aerial systems — also known as drones — to patrol the city 10 hours a day, seven days a week from four launch sites.
The advanced drones used by the team in James City County can provide officers with a bird’s-eye view of everything from crime scenes and traffic pursuits to help searches for missing persons.
While the vast majority of the transportation $3.7B budget covers roads and bridges, it also includes smaller pots of funding for public transit, electric vehicle infrastructure and drone development, among others.
Drones are playing an integral part in keeping birds away from dangerous power lines by placing robotic bird diverters on the lines. Some 1,500 new bird diverters have been launched to protect Atlantic City Electric infrastructure.
The City Council this week began discussing a new policy about the use of police department drones. One provision would require officers to obtain a search warrant before launching the device for surveillance purposes.
The food delivery robots used on the University of Idaho campus could soon find their way to city streets under a proposal being considered by Moscow city leaders. The one-year agreement would only allow 30 of the devices to operate.
The Honolulu Fire Department was forced to delay the helicopter rescue of a hiker when a rogue drone interfered with the emergency operation. Officials were able to locate the operator and remove the device from the airspace.