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New legal guidelines on abortion, policing, taxes take impact throughout U.S.

New legal guidelines on abortion, policing, taxes take impact throughout U.S.

Minimal wage will increase, animal protections, police accountability, slicing and growing taxes are all a part of a sequence of latest legal guidelines taking impact throughout the nation on Saturday, the primary day of 2022.

A few of the legal guidelines reminiscent of abortion restrictions in New Hampshire or police reform measures handed in Illinois, Oregon and North Carolina tackle a number of the most contentious problems with our time.

Others, reminiscent of a Maine regulation handed within the aftermath of a September 2019 explosion that killed a firefighter and injured quite a few others, are extra narrowly centered and have been handed to treatment particular conditions.

The Connecticut Parentage Act permits single, same-sex or nonbiological mother and father to ascertain parenting rights by means of a easy kind that offers mother and father authorized capabilities instantly after a baby is born.

In Kansas, folks shall be allowed to purchase specialised license plates that includes the “Don’t Tread on Me” and coiled snake image featured on what’s often called the Gadsen flag. Critics recommended that the Gadsen flag has change into a racist image that has been adopted by some far-right teams.

READ MORE: Sarah Weddington, lawyer who efficiently argued Roe v. Wade, dies at 76

Here’s a rundown of a number of the new legal guidelines taking impact Saturday throughout the nation:


In New Hampshire, abortion shall be prohibited after 24 weeks of gestation, with exceptions for the mom’s life or bodily well being.

Democrats have already drafted laws looking for to repeal the brand new restrictions. Some additionally need to embody the suitable to make reproductive medical choices a constitutional proper.

The brand new regulation in New Hampshire comes because the U.S. Supreme Courtroom is contemplating a case that might severely erode abortion rights which have stood for half a century. Republican lawmakers throughout the nation are able to additional limit or ban abortions outright whereas Democratic-led ones are looking for to make sure entry to abortion of their state regulation.

Animal welfare

Come Saturday California can have the nation’s hardest residing house requirements for breeding pigs.

Trade lawsuits failed to dam the measure that’s the results of a 2018 poll initiative failed, however grocers and restauranteurs are actually suing to pressure a 28-month delay. Critics together with some lawmakers of each events have referred to as for pushing aside enforcement till 2024 for concern costs will rise and jobs shall be misplaced.

California is permitting the continued sale of pork processed below the previous guidelines, which proponents say ought to blunt any scarcity and value surge.

READ MORE: Will new bacon regulation start? California grocers search delay

Maryland will be part of quite a few states with a brand new regulation that may prohibit the sale of any new beauty product if it comprises elements that have been examined on animals.

In Vermont, a brand new regulation outlaws the commerce in components or merchandise from quite a few unique animals, together with elephants, giraffes, sea turtles, endangered sharks, whales and sure primates.

The regulation consists of exemptions for regulation enforcement, instructional or scientific makes use of. The regulation additionally permits for the commerce in antiques that comprise small quantities of the animal product or is a set part of a firearm; knife; or a legally acquired, small musical instrument.

Drug Regulation Modifications

Leisure marijuana will change into authorized in Montana. State voters accredited the change in a November 2020 initiative.

Beneath the brand new regulation, solely companies that had been offering medical marijuana previous to Nov. 3, 2020, are eligible to develop, manufacture and promote adult-use marijuana, concentrates and edibles by means of June 30, 2023.

READ MORE: Why the push to decriminalize psychedelics is rising in Michigan

A brand new Mississippi regulation eliminates the requirement for a prescription to purchase decongestants that comprise ephedrine or pseudoephedrine. Beneath the brand new regulation, the medication shall be out there behind the counter of pharmacies, and pharmacists shall be required to maintain observe of how a lot is bought to at least one particular person.

Like many different states, Mississippi mandated a prescription years in the past as a result of drug enforcement brokers stated drugs with ephedrine or pseudoephedrine have been getting used as an ingredient in crystal methamphetamine. Some customers complained that nonprescription decongestants weren’t robust sufficient.

Minimal wage

California will change into the primary state to require a $15-an-hour minimal wage for companies with greater than 25 workers. Various different places throughout the nation have already reached the $15 threshold.

Greater than 20 different states are additionally growing their minimal wages to quantities of lower than $15. A handful of states haven’t any state-level minimal wage regulation, that means they depend on the federal minimal wage of $7.25 per hour.

Bodily discrimination

In each Illinois and Oregon, new legal guidelines take impact that ban discrimination primarily based on bodily traits, reminiscent of coiffure.

In Oregon, the invoice recognized unofficially often called the “Crown Act” will ban discrimination primarily based on “bodily traits which might be traditionally related to race,” together with hair types reminiscent of braids, locs and twists.

READ MORE: A yearslong push to ban hair discrimination is gaining momentum

In Illinois, the laws is named the Jett Hawkins Regulation after Gus “Jett” Hawkins, a Black scholar who at age 4 was advised to take out his braids as a result of the coiffure violated the costume code at his Chicago faculty.

His mom, Ida Nelson, started an consciousness marketing campaign after the incident, saying stigmatizing youngsters’s hair can negatively have an effect on their instructional improvement. She referred to as the it “monumental” when the invoice was signed final summer season by Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker.

Police reform

Spurred by the racial reckoning following the homicide of George Floyd and different Black folks killed by police, quite a few states handed new legal justice legal guidelines in 2021 — the primary full yr of state legislative classes after Floyd’s dying.

An Illinois regulation standardizes certification of cops by the Illinois Regulation Enforcement Coaching and Requirements Board and permits for decertifying officers for repeated errant or unethical conduct, as a substitute of solely once they’re convicted of against the law.

READ MORE: States diverge on police reforms after George Floyd killing

In North Carolina, regulation enforcement recruits now should obtain psychological screenings by a licensed psychologist to find out their suitability for the job earlier than they’ll work as an officer or deputy. A earlier mandate didn’t apply to everybody.

In Oregon, a brand new regulation requires a police officer who witnesses one other officer participating in misconduct or a violation of the state’s minimal ethical health requirements to report it to a supervisor inside 72 hours. A police company should full an investigation inside three months and report findings of misconduct that rises above minor violations to the state.


In Georgia, a brand new regulation will increase the quantity folks can earn earlier than they begin paying state taxes. The tax minimize will save particular person tax filers as much as $43 a yr, and married {couples} submitting collectively as much as $63.

Georgia lecturers who conform to work in sure rural or low-performing colleges might rise up to $3,000 a yr off their state revenue taxes for 5 years.

READ MORE: How some faculty districts are dealing with workers shortages, different pandemic disruptions

In Oklahoma, the highest particular person revenue tax charge is dropping from 5% to 4.75%. Lawmakers additionally slashed the company revenue tax charge from 6% to 4%.

“I’ve pledged to make Oklahoma a prime 10 state for enterprise and making our enterprise taxes among the many lowest within the nation is one other device that may assist us proceed to recruit and retain corporations,” Oklahoma’s Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt stated after signing the payments.

In New Mexico, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and the state’s Democrat-led Legislature added a brand new 2.75% surtax on medical health insurance premiums.

The tax enhance shall be used largely to underwrite health-exchange insurance coverage choices for low- and moderate-income people together with workers at small companies, beginning in 2023.

Related Press writers throughout the nation contributed to this report.

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