Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), a member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, released the following statement congratulating the City of Reno and Flirtey, a Reno-based drone delivery startup, for being selected to participate in the highly competitive Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Integration Pilot Program. Senator Cortez Masto toured Flirtey’s manufacturing facility this past August and has repeatedly called upon the Administration, in both a letter and in personal appeals to DOT Secretary Elaine Chao, to include Nevada in this program.
“Nevada is leading the way in innovative technology and I am proud to work with companies like Flirtey on behalf of the State of Nevada and our efforts to foster a 21st century economy,” said Cortez Masto. “Companies like Flirtey are pioneering new ways to save lives and change lifestyles. By introducing high tech ways to grow and diversify our local economy and develop industry-leading innovations, Flirtey, the City of Reno, and the other stakeholders involved in this application are leading the way in revolutionary drone delivery technology. I will continue fighting in the Senate for the resources and programs Nevada needs in order to tap our state’s immense potential as an FAA-designated national test site in the drone industry and continue to be on the cutting edge of new technologies that will move us forward.”
The FAA’s UAS Integration Pilot Program presents opportunities for state, local and tribal governments to partner with local businesses and manufactures to help support innovative drone technology programs. The Department of Transportation received over 140 applications this year, and 10 were selected to participate in the program.
Under her Innovation State initiative, Senator Cortez Masto has introduced and sponsored legislation to help strengthen Nevada’s technology sector, including leading on the Safe DRONE Act, which advances the development and safe integration of unmanned aircraft systems and supports workforce training programs. From that, the Senator has been able to extend the authorization of the State of Nevada’s UAS test site and help promote education efforts like “Know Before You Fly” within the Senate’s version of the FAA reauthorization bill.
To learn more about the senator’s efforts to accelerate Nevada’s transformation into an Innovation State by fostering innovation, attracting investments, creating jobs and making the state a leader in developing new technology, click here.