WASHINGTON––Following House-passage of the Drone Infrastructure Inspection Grant Act, U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) advocated for the Senate to pass the bipartisan legislation during an Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW) hearing Wednesday.

Boozman highlighted the efforts in Arkansas to use drones to enhance infrastructure inspections across the state.

“One of the reasons I’m championing this legislation is because the Arkansas Department of Transportation has really embraced the use of drones to augment human inspectors and spot flaws,” Boozman said.

The nominee to serve as Administrator of the Federal Highway Administration, Shailen Bhatt, promoted the use of drone technology to improve infrastructure safety calling it “efficient” and expressing excitement about the possibilities it offers.

The Drone Infrastructure Inspection Grant Act would authorize $100 million in competitive grants to use American-made drones to perform critical infrastructure inspection, maintenance or construction projects. This bipartisan bill would also authorize $100 million in grants for workforce training and education to prepare the next generation of workers in this field. It was introduced by Boozman and Senators Jacky Rosen (D-NV) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT).