ALABAMA: At least 11 laws became effective Wednesday, including a pair of bills that incentivize job creation for all residents and veterans. Another creates a transportation infrastructure bank.
CALIFORNIA: Employers must now offer workers at least three paid sick days each year, a requirement passed in only two other states — New Jersey and Connecticut. All smartphones sold in the state must also now be capable of being remotely disabled. Ride-sharing companies such as Uber and Lyft are now subject to more stringent insurance requirements, and new hydraulic fracturing regulations go into effect.
COLORADO: The 19 new laws include harsh penalties for amateur marijuana hash oil cooks who use dangerous materials in manufacturing the concentrated product at home, and a new cyberbullying law.
Taxes and fees go up on businesses and hospitals, wealthy taxpayers face increased income tax rates, and the maximum property tax deduction goes from $300 to $200. Several planned tax cuts, including a sales tax exemption for clothing, are scrapped as well.
FLORIDA: Under its 130 new laws, gun club memberships are no longer subject to sales taxes and Floridians can fill their 64-ounce growlers at breweries. Local governments must now start to seek out American-made flags, and gay adoption is officially taken off the books.
GEORGIA: The state loosens its fireworks regulations and alters its gas tax just in time for Independence Day. A $5,000 tax credit for electric vehicles is dropped, while a $200 annual user fee was added, and child and sex abuse laws were strengthened. Ride-sharing companies face new background-check and insurance regulations, too.
IDAHO: A new $95 million infrastructure plan goes into effect, translating to repairs for roads and bridges and some new costs to residents. A five-year increase in teacher salaries begins to go into effect, and the state will allow residents to carry concealed weapons without permits outside city limits. Idaho also adopts the giant salamander as its official amphibian. The state’s presidential primary was moved to March from May.
INDIANA: The state’s controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act goes into effect, though the legislature revised that law amid a backlash: Businesses may not use religion as a legal defense in refusing certain customers. Drivers under 21 can no longer use cellphones, except to call 911, and drivers can now be fined up to $500 for moving too slowly in the left lane.
KANSAS: The state becomes the fifth to allow residents to carry concealed weapons without a permit, while cigarette taxes go up by 50 cents, and human trafficking victims can seek damages in court for the pain and suffering caused by their traffickers.
MARYLAND: Police must now report to the governor any residents or officers killed in the line of duty. The state also officially sanctioned ride-sharing, allowing Uber and Lyft to operate within its borders.
MONTANA: Most of the 93 laws going into effect Wednesday are “housekeeping” measures, the Associated Press reports, but some significant changes are going live, too. Mental health services will get a $20 million boost, while the state seeks to reduce its first-in-the-nation suicide rate by encouraging school employees to take suicide awareness training. Ride-sharing companies may also now operate in the state.
NEVADA: More than 200 laws went into effect, many stemming from the governor’s massive tax plan. Ride-sharers got legal approval to operate.
NEW HAMPSHIRE: The state joins 14 others in banning hand-held cellphones while driving, though Bluetooth and hands-free devices are still allowed.
NORTH DAKOTA: The more than 100 new laws include a five-percentage-point increase in the share of oil production taxes going to local governments, which will now receive 30 percent of all such revenues.
TENNESSEE: Women seeking abortions must now receive in-person counseling and are subject to a 48-hour wait, lifetime handgun carry permits are now $500, and bystanders now have the authority to break car windows on hot days when pets are locked inside. Residents driving without insurance face even steeper fines.
VIRGINIA: Colleges must now notify the state of acts of sexual violence, while employees of any nonprofit higher education institution are required to report sexual assaults. Industrial hemp may now be cultivated in the state, and employees and job applicants can no longer be forced to disclose social media usernames or passwords to employers.