I hope that you and Lisa are doing great. Nice find, but I think this paragraph about half way down is their loophole for shoving this crap down our throats:
"It is important to note that the RFA does not compel specific regulatory outcomes. Agencies are required to assess the impacts of their proposed and final rules on small entities, and to select less burdensome alternatives—or explain why they cannot do so. But they are not required to alter their agency missions or their legal mandates. Like the Administrative Procedure Act that it amends, the RFA primarily defines the required procedural steps in a process. While agency non-compliance with these required steps can (and has) led to suspensions of various regulations by the courts, it is the failure to faithfully observe the process, not the subject matter of the regulations, that has led to these outcomes."
These two sentences are the main point: But they are not required to alter their agency missions or their legal mandates. Like the Administrative Procedure Act that it amends, the RFA primarily defines the required procedural steps in a process.
I think that there is some language in the RFA that can be used to fight back with, but at what costs.
You brought up in a thread on HF the laws that individual states are trying to pass that would make it illegal to take images on private property with drones. I see that as being way more annoying than the FAA at this point. Yes, if we are on private property on a shoot we will 99% of the time be there with permission. But if law enforcement is actively looking for drones flying around with cameras the privacy laws will give them reason enough to stop and shut you down long enough to ascertain whether you are there legally or not.
Sorry for the rambling. I'm bored and sick and tired of working on new machines so I thought I would sit down and rack my brain trying to not misspell too many words. OK, breaks over and its back to work.