June 25, 2024

New Laws Going Into Effect July 1

While Connecticut’s legislative sessions lead to the development and passage of bills that are signed into law by Governor Lamont, they do not all go into effect upon the stroke of his pen. Laws often take time to go into effect, and on July 1, bills passed in the last several years will have parts of their language, or their full language, become official. Here’s a roundup of some of the more impactful laws coming on July 1:

Far too many Connecticut residents struggle with the burden of medical debt, which can leave a trail of frustration far after someone heals from an injury or illness. As of July 1, hospitals and health care facilities will not be allowed to submit medical debt to credit agencies to negatively impact a patient or customer’s credit rating. Debt included in such a rating would be voided.

Beginning in July, social media platforms will delete a minor’s social media pages upon their request or a parent or guardian’s request, including ceasing collection of personal data. These platforms will also provide privacy notices for minors.

To prevent dangerous driving around school buses that could lead to students being harmed, municipalities will be allowed to adopt ordinances regarding drivers illegally passing those buses. Significant fines may result.

In schools, there will be an increased focus on letting kids be kids. Play-based learning, which can include free play time, guided play time or learning through structured play, will be a required element of education from pre-school to the fifth grade, helping kids have fun with learning.

Improving public safety, state departments will start pooling funds to provide group homes with five-thousand gallon water tanks, keeping residents safe.

Protecting seniors, new standards to report financial exploitation of seniors to the Department of Social Services, the Commissioner of Banking or a third party listed as a designated trusted contact will be in place, including new standards to protect against disbursements of funds if financial exploitation has or will reasonably occur.

Other changes coming July 1 will include simplified standards for building solar canopies, increasing use of solar panels; better standards for youth camp inspections, aligning state department resources in a more efficient way; expanding the Low-Income Energy Advisory Board to cover water services; and having barbers, hairdressers and cosmetologists’ education include textured hair.

Posted by Joe O’Leary