North Carolina Governor, Roy Cooper, signed two bills this week to regulate the use of unmanned aerial systems (UAS or drones). First, House Bill 337 revises existing state drone law to make that existing state drone law applicable to model aircraft. House Bill 128 prohibits drone use near prisons –with the term “near” being defined as a horizontal distance of 500 feet or a vertical distance of 250 feet. Both of these bills will go into effect on December 1, 2017. North Carolina hopes to show the country that it is ready and willing to do business in the UAS industry, and hopefully draw more of this industry to the state. In particular, House Bill 337’s expansion to model aircraft clears up the ambiguity in the old law. If a hobbyist used a drone to take photographs, the legality of the action was unclear, but now the playing field will be leveled out; North Carolina’s state drone law will apply to both commercial and non-commercial drone use. Of course, the other bill, House Bill 128, seeks to lessen the ability of those with nefarious intentions to carry out contraband drops into prison yards using drones; however, even with a new law out there, those with bad intentions are necessarily prevented from carry them out. North Carolina will simply join the many other states who have prison-specific drone regulations