Happy July 1, Here are Your New Laws

Happy July 1st! Before you hit the road, there are many new laws you are going to have to obey. Here’s what you need to know as you begin your day, or so you can talk about them with your coworkers.

One new law that has garnered a lot of attention is the ban on so-called keepsake ultrasounds.

A new law prohibits anyone from performing an ultrasound on a pregnant woman unless a doctor orders one for medical or diagnostic purposes.

So, if you want to peek on baby, you’ll have to wait for a doctor’s orders or your due date. 

Supporters of the legislation say ultrasounds performed for entertainment – those oohs and ahhs moments -- are inappropriate and potentially dangerous if done repeatedly.

No conclusive studies have proven that they cause long-term injuries to women or fetuses.

Beginning July 1, all schools must have defibrillators. There is, however, a loophole if the school’s budget is a bust. Schools do not have to have one if there is no money available.

The state has also adopted a "silver alert" system that will help find missing adults with dementia.

Other new laws require nursing homes to provide annual training in pain recognition and management.

Now, physicians have the authority to prescribe long-term antibiotics to treat persistent Lyme Disease.

Another law lifts the threshold for when small charities must be audited.

Starting July 1, there is also a 14-member State Contracts Standards Board, which sort of baby-sits the state’s buyers. The board will review, monitor and audit the state agency purchasing.

There is still, however, no new budget. Gov. M. Jodi Rell, as promised, vetoed the Connecticut Democrats' budget proposal, saying it's not balanced or realistic.

Rell's veto Wednesday comes as she meets privately with legislative leaders at the executive residence about a new two-year tax and spending plan.

Rell says no tax increases are needed while the Democrats have proposed raising taxes on wealthy taxpayers and corporations.
 In lieu of a budget, the governor signed an executive order to keep things operating for the next month, among them all state parks. They will remain open.

"First and foremost, people should rest assured that state government will continue to operate. Services will be delivered. We will care for the vulnerable and the sick. Public safety and public health will be protected," Rell said in a statement her office released.

For a glimpse at what the laws you no longer have to follow, check the old and odd laws that have come off the books in the last year.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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