Covering Louisiana

Aug 2, 2014 12:16 AM by Alex Labat

551 New Laws Now in Effect in Louisiana

A new month, new laws.
That's what residents across the state are dealing with today, after a number of new laws take effect today. As we've reported, some of those laws involve drinking and driving. The changes, two years in the works, were made in this year's legislative session. "Act 385" is an effort to simplify the laws dealing with drunk driving, especially when it comes to multiple offenses, underage drinkers, and suspending licenses. The bill was backed by district attorneys, sheriffs, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
But that's just scratching the surface.
With 551 new laws and amendments taking effect August 1st, keeping track of then is enough to drive anyone a little crazy. Many deal with new laws regarding operating a vehicle. You can get your drivers license renewed for up to 6 years, and you can even get your car inspected in the rain. But, if you're in a car and you're using your phone in a school zone, you'll be in serious trouble.
Your shopping lists could also be affected. Home bakers who sell to the public are now exempt from rules that require commercial grade equipment. Food makers who make baked goods, candies, honey, jams, jellies, pickles, sauces, syrups, and spices are exempt if their annual sales are less than $20,000.
Terminally ill patients now have permission for their doctors to use experimental drugs or treatments that haven't been approved by the FDA. But, if you're underage, buyer beware. Minors will be required to show a prescription when buying certain over-the-counter cough medicines.
And sun tan lotion? Forget about it.
Anyone under 18 in Louisiana is prohibited from using tanning beds.
If you're checking out gifts for teachers, you've now got a limit. Ethics laws require public schoolteachers to only accept up to $25 at a time, and a total of $75 per year from the same person.

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