New State Laws Went in Affect July 1st May Surprise you!

These are just SOME of the new State laws which went into effect today!

California

-Beginning July 1, 2019, ammunition dealers will be required to check with the Department of Justice at the time of purchase that individuals seeking to buy ammunition are not prohibited persons.

-Requires the release of recordings from body-worn cameras within 45 days of an incident, including if officers fired shots or if a use-of-force causes death or great bodily harm. Law goes into effect July 1, 2019.

-The California Department of Justice will need to review all marijuana convictions that would be reduced or expunged due to voters approving marijuana for recreational use in 2016. The deadline is July 1, 2019.

Colorado

Starting today, taking a quick puff on a vape pen in a bar or restaurant could get tokers in trouble.

All vaping will be prohibited in most public places, including bars and restaurants, by a new state law that will take effect today.

Connecticut

Lots of changes in state taxes and fees. On that list is an increase in the per ride fee for ride-hailing services, such as Lyft and Uber. The budget legislation increases that fee from 25 cents to 30 cents on rides that originate in Connecticut.

Also on Monday, the first of two reductions in the state admissions tax at certain venues for certain events will begin. The rate will drop from 10% to 7.5% at the XL Center in Hartford; Dillon Stadium in Hartford; New Britain Stadium; Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, Harbor Yard Amphitheater in Bridgeport; Dodd Stadium in Norwich; Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford; and Rentschler Field in East Hartford. Those rates will later drop from 7.5% to 5% on July 1, 2020.

The admissions tax rate at Dunkin’ Donuts Park in Hartford will drop from 10% to 5% and it will be fully exempted beginning July 1, 2020.

Additionally, certain properties with crumbling foundations caused by the presence of the mineral pyrrhotite will be exempted from the real estate conveyance tax beginning Monday.

One new law allows any student 6 years old or older to self-apply sunscreen in school before they participate in recess and other outdoor activities, with the written permission of a parent or guardian. Parents told legislators that elementary school students are currently required to have a school nurse apply sunscreen before they go outside. They said students often skip sunscreen so they don’t miss out on recess, putting them at risk for skin cancers.

District of Columbia

In the District, the hourly minimum wage will rise to $14, and tipped workers will make at least $4.45 an hour. Employers will make up the difference if tips fall short of $14 per hour. DC's minimum wage will rise to $15 next year and increase with inflation afterward. District inspectors will also start fining restaurants $100 to $800 for using plastic straws. Businesses are allowed to keep a small stock of plastic straws for customers with disabilities.

FLORIDA

HB 107 Texting and driving

Don’t do it. New state law makes texting while driving a primary traffic offense – although there will be a six-month grace period where only citations will be issued. Prior to the new law, texting while driving was only a secondary offense that officers could only cite drivers for after pulling them over for a different violation. Also, the law bans the use of handheld wireless devices in school and construction zones. First offense: $30. Second offense: $60. Court costs and fees also apply and points will be assigned to licenses. The ban doesn’t apply to drivers using a navigation device or texting while not moving.

HB 611: Motor vehicle racing

Fast and Furious fans take note. Police will have an easier time shutting down illegal street-racing in Florida under this law introduced by Rep. Amy Mercado, D-Orlando. It authorizes officers to arrest people without a warrant upon probable cause of drag racing on city streets without having to actually witness the activity. Instead, they can rely on witness statements.This law was prompted by a toddler who was killed by two teens street racing on Bayshore Blvd. in Tampa.

SB 426: Firefighter benefits

It took 15 years for firefighters to finally get full insurance coverage and death benefits for contracting cancer while in the line of duty. The law covers out-of-pocket expenses and copayments and a $25,000 cash payout. Some 70 percent of firefighter deaths in the line-of-duty are cancer-related, the governor’s office said. Florida is one of the last states to provide cancer benefits.

Georgia

Child marriage — House Bill 228

The minimum marriage age will increase from 16 to 17.

The move puts Georgia among a handful of states that forbid 16-year-olds from getting married. Most other states allow teens as young as 16 to get married with parental permission.

Lawmakers who supported the law say it will help protect children from domestic violence, high divorce rates, child abuse and human trafficking.

Illinois

Starting Monday, it will officially become illegal in Illinois for anyone to sell or provide tobacco and products to anyone under 21

It prohibits anyone from selling or providing cigarettes, electronic cigarettes or any other “alternative” tobacco product to a person under age 21.

Both Illinois and Virginia passed Tobacco 21 laws this year, making them the seventh and eighth states to have such laws in effect, according to the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. The others are Hawaii, California, New Jersey, Oregon, Maine and Massachusetts.

Delaware, Arkansas, Texas, Vermont, Connecticut, Maryland, Washington and Utah have enacted similar laws that are set to take effect between now and July 1, 2021.

Indiana

Several new state laws take effect Monday, from a required high school state government test to allowing wrongfully incarcerated individuals to collect $50,000 a year.

Under a new law, Indiana high schools will have to administer the U.S. naturalization test, as part of a mandatory government course, that’s given to immigrants hoping to become U.S. citizens. An initial plan had proposed that students had to pass the test to earn a high school diploma, but that plan was scrapped.

Other new laws include allowing people who are wrongfully incarcerated be eligible to receive $50,000 for each year behind bars once a conviction is vacated due to innocence.

Kentucky

Legally eligible adults now are able to carry a concealed firearm without a permit, employers now must make certain reasonable accommodations for pregnant employees and electric scooters now will be regulated by state law.

Those are just some of the new laws approved during the Kentucky General Assembly’s 2019 session that go into effect today.

The Kentucky Constitution specifies new laws take effect 90 days after the adjournment of the legislature unless they have special effective dates, are general appropriation measures or include emergency clauses that make them effective immediately upon becoming law. Final adjournment of the 2019 session was March 28, making June 27 the effective date for most bills.

Iowa

DES MOINES — Dozens of new state laws go on Iowa’s books today.

Some could make a quick splash, like legalized sports betting that casinos already are gearing up for that could be available to Iowans later this summer. Other new laws will not be noticeable for months yet.

BETTING ON COLLEGE AND PRO SPORTS BEGINS

Soon Iowans will be able to cast legal bets on professional and college sporting events.

The new law goes into effect now, but the state still is writing and rules and regulations for legalized sports betting, which will be available to any of the state-licensed casinos or online.

Regulators say they expect the framework to be in place by this fall’s professional and college football seasons.

A 2018 U.S. Supreme Court ruling gave all states the option to legalize sports betting. Iowa joined the rush — 18 states now have legal sports betting.

Casinos will be charged a 7.5 percent tax on sports betting revenue, and the activity will be regulated by the state agency that oversees casino gaming and horse and dog racing.

CHILDREN’S MENTAL HEALTH SYSTEM FORMS

The state continues to transform its mental health care delivery system. Having previously reformed the way mental health care services for adults are delivered — and expanding those services — the state this year created the framework for a system specifically for children.

The new children’s system has been described as a foundation for future development, and a positive and necessary first step in a state that before lacked a statewide approach.

“It’s a good first step in developing a children’s mental health care plan,” said Jack Whitver, the Republican Senate Majority Leader from Ankeny. “We wanted to put that framework in place. But that’s just the beginning of the work. ... But it’s a really good first step.”

LONGER TAX FOR SCHOOL INFRASTRUCTURE

School districts will have more confidence using bond financing for infrastructure projects, and taxpayers should get more property tax relief with the extension of an existing 1-cent sales tax.

Maryland

Maryland also will be able to create a review board on prescription drug costs. The five board members haven't been named yet.

Another new law is designed to protect oysters by putting five sanctuaries permanently into the law.

Illegal to sell Tobacco and E cigarettes to anyone under 21

Oklahoma

Dozens of new laws go into effect in Oklahoma, including two that will affect drivers.

And there are two parts to comply with the new license plate law.

Under the new law, all drivers in the state will have to keep their registration inside their cars.

In all, 86 new laws will be going into effect today, including one that gives state employees a long-awaited pay raise.

State workers making less than $40,000 a year will receive a $1,500 bump in pay.

This is the first raise state workers have seen in over 11 years.

Virginia

In Virginia, one of the biggest items that passed during the legislative session earlier this year was a measure that ends the suspension of driver's licenses of people with unpaid court debt. The Department of Motor Vehicles said it sent 500,000 letters to Virginia residents with suspended licenses advising them how to get their license back starting July 1.

Other notable new laws going into effect include an increase in the age limit to buy tobaccoproductsfrom 18 to 21, looser restrictions on happy hour advertising, and a $4 increase on mandatory car-safety inspections.

  1.  Hand-held cell phone use in work zones:Drivers shouldn’t ever be texting and driving, especially in construction zones – and now there’s a law to help prevent it. Starting today, those caught using a hand-held cell phone in a work zone will face a mandatory $250 fee.
  2. Tommie’s Law: Named for Tommie, the pit bull who died after being tied to a fence and set on fire in a Richmond park, ‘Tommie’s Law’ increases the penalty for all animal cruelty to a Class 6 felony, a charge carrying a sentence of up to five years in prison or a $2,500 fine.
  3. Suspended drivers licenses:Beginning today, Virginia courts will no longer suspend drivers licenses for unpaid court fines and costs. The state will also reinstate driving licenses for more than 627,000 Virginians.
  4. Tobacco purchasing age rises:Sorry teen smokers and vapers, the age requirement for purchasing tobacco in Virginia have gone up from 18 to 21 – unless you’re active military duty personnel. Those 18 and older with a valid military ID will still be able to purchase tobacco products.
  5. Surrogacy law: Single people and same-sex couples will have an easier time adopting children using surrogacy. The law previously limited surrogacy agreements to couples consisting of a married man and woman. Now, the law’s language has changed, replacing the words “husband” and “wife” with the term “spouse.”
  6. Trooper Walter:When State Police officer Michael T. Walter was shot and killed while on duty in Richmond, his murderer received just 36 years in prison. A new law spearheaded by Walter’s widow Jaime has changed the sentencing guidelines for capital murder. Now, anyone convicted of capital murder faces a mandatory life sentence or capital punishment.
  7. Kings Dominion Law:Since the 1980s, Virginia state law has required school districts to begin classes after labor day unless they apply for an exception. While the law was originally instated to help Virginia’s tourism industry (hence the amusement park reference,) the 2019 General Assembly changed the legislation, allowing VA schools to open two -weeks earlier as long as they permit a four-day Labor Day weekend.
  8. Child car seats:Starting today, parents in Virginia will be required to use rear-facing car seats for their children until they reach the age of two, or meet the minimum weight standards for a forward facing seat.
  9. Heaven’s Law:Named for 11-year-old Heaven Watkins, a Norfolk girl brutally beaten to death in May of 2018, Heaven’s Law requires caseworkers to look back at least 5 years when investigating child abuse investigations to see if a child has been abused or neglected in another state.
  10. Eviction Relief:A package of new laws will work to reduce eviction rates across the state by giving tenants more time to pay rent and fees ahead of an eviction notice, and limiting the number of legal actions a landlord may file.

 
 
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Michael J.

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