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SALT LAKE CITY — On Tuesday, the bulk of the record 574 bills passed by the 2019 Utah Legislature will go into effect. Here's a look at how changes made to state laws will affect you.
Scott G Winterton, Deseret News
- More affordable housing is the goal of SB34, which encourages cities to plan projects by leveraging eligibility for state transportation funding. But $24 million intended to help turn those plans into reality was stripped from the bill.
- Metering of new secondary water connections and planning to do the same for existing connections will be required under SB52, which also makes $10 million available in loans to help water delivery systems make the transition.
- Rural communities will be reimbursed up to 100 percent for the cost of recycling used tires through SB46, rather than the 60 percent currently offered through a nearly 30-year old state program.
- Autonomous vehicles are regulated under HB101, allowing for testing on Utah roads.
- Cities can create anti-idling ordinances with more teeth, requiring a minimum of one warning citation instead of at least three, under HB148.
- Landlords can’t request an extra deposit for service or emotional support animals under HB43, but they can collect for damages. It also makes lying about an emotional support animal a criminal act.
- “Fringe gambling” will no longer be allowed in Utah with the passage of HB23, this will outlaw slot machine-like gambling devices that have been available in some convenience stores across the state.
- Local alerts and electronic highway signs can be used to help find missing and endangered senior citizens through the Silver Alert program created by HB215.
Kristin Murphy, Deseret News
- Abortions after 18 weeks would be banned under HB136. However, Planned Parenthood sued as expected and a federal judge has issued an injunction barring enforcement of the law while the case is argued.
- Although abortions would not be allowed under HB166 if the only reason is because the unborn child may have Down syndrome, the bill does not take effect until its constitutionality is upheld.
- Safety regulations and license requirements will be added to amusement and trampoline parks. HB150 requires trampoline parks to have inspections, insurance and posted rules, and HB381 requires amusement rides to have frequent inspections.
- The process of making a public website where health care prices will be posted begins under HB178, while aggregated state medical records would be available to allow for comparing procedure prices under SB229.
- Two bills addressing opioids will go into effect, HB186, which will regulate prescriptions for controlled substances, and HB191, which requires doctors to discuss the risks of using an opioid before prescribing them.
- Eligibility for Medicaid doesn't end when someone is incarcerated under HB460, allowing them to have health insurance more quickly after being released from prison.
- HB393 creates a program to educate health care providers and establish a program for them to call psychiatrists to get information for how to help their patients with mental health.
- Health insurance plans have to provide coverage for behavioral health treatment for people with autism spectrum disorder under SB95, regardless of their age and how many hours of treatment they might need.
- Pelvic examinations will be banned on patients under anesthesia who have not knowingly given consent to the procedure under SB188.
Steve Griffin, Deseret News
- Multiple bills change the statewide initiative process. HB145 is meant to make sure voters know what they are signing, HB133 lengthens the effective date to match bills passed in the legislative session, HB195 modifies the number of signatures needed to match active voters, and SB151 requires the price tag as well as funding sources to be spelled out.
- After long waits marred the March 2016 party-run caucus votes to determine presidential preferences, SB242 returns statewide presidential primary elections to Utah. The $2.9 million primary is set for March 3, 2020, part of the Super Tuesday elections around the country.
- Candidates for government offices will be able to use campaign funds to pay for child care, both during the campaign and while participating in public duties, if elected, after the passage of HB129.
- No one will be allowed to hold both a county and a municipal office at the same time under SB50.
- Candidates will be able to keep their home addresses private under SB163, as long as they provide another address or phone number where they can be contacted.
- The 14-year-old Utah Science, Technology and Research Initiative known as USTAR will be dismantled by SB212, with a few programs moving to the Governor's Office of Economic Development.
My quality of life
Kristin Murphy, Deseret News
- The Utah Transit Authority will be able to offer 17 free-fare days when the air quality is low with funding provided in HB353.
- There's $5 million in HB357 to help especially lower-income Utahns with wood-burning stoves convert to more environmentally friendly heating methods.
- In an increasingly urbanized Utah, SB93 is intended to help protect farmers and ranchers from "nuisance" claims of adverse affects from an agricultural operation.
- Carrying a driver's license on a cellphone instead of in a wallet is one step closer to reality with SB100, which starts the process of setting up an electronic license option in the Beehive State.
- Vandalizing public lands with graffiti becomes a class B misdemeanor under SB270
Steve Griffin, Deseret News
- Penalties can be enhanced for hate crimes when victims are targeted based on their race, religion, sexual orientation or a long list of other personal characteristics under SB103.
- Utah's "stand your ground" law becomes stronger with HB114. Failure to retreat will not be relevant in determining if an individual acted rationally.
- Suicide prevention efforts in HB17 include requiring gun locks to be provided with certain gun purchases and a new suicide prevention course.
- Police officers no longer have a blanket exemption for carrying weapons while intoxicated with HB94, but they still can if the weapon is encased or not readily available.
- Individuals who have obtained a protective order can carry a concealed weapon before obtaining a permit for a limited amount of time under HB243.
- Torturing, poisoning or killing an animal to threaten or harass a spouse or other cohabitant can be considered a domestic violence offense under SB45.
- Placing a tracking device in someone's car will be a misdemeanor under HB223, although there are exemptions in some cases for law enforcement and private investigators.
- Faking a drug test and distributing or possessing fake urine is a crime under HB16.
- E-scooter riders can't drink alcohol while operating the two-wheeled vehicles but will be able to use all the same roadways as bicyclists, under SB139, which also permits riders as young as 8 years old.
- Websites that publish mug shots will be subject to new restrictions under SB185, which limits the fees that can be charged to remove and destroy booking photos and imposes civil penalties on websites that don't comply with deadlines.
- The BYU Police Department has to follow the same public records rules as other police agencies under SB197. BYU is appealing a decision by the Utah Department of Public Safety to decertify its police department.
- Children and teens facing criminal charges in Utah's juvenile court system will be provided with attorneys through the public defender's office under SB32.
- Assaulting or threatening violence against a child welfare worker is a crime under SB59.
- Law enforcement will need a warrant to access personal information and documents stored on remote computer servers commonly referred to as "the cloud" under HB57.
- Motorcyclists will be able to maneuver at a slow speed between vehicles through stopped traffic, a practice known as lane filtering, but only on roads with a speed limit of 45 mph or less under HB149.
- What can be taught in school about contraception is clarified in HB71, but teachers cannot advocate it be used.
- The State Board of Education will evaluate the duties of school counselors under HB81, to encourage focusing on assisting students with emotional issues.
- Funding to offer mental health counseling in schools and contract for community-based services will be available under HB373, while HB120 focuses on school safety as well as mental health, calling for new policies to be developed and experts to be hired.
- Medicaid will be able to be billed for some mental health services in schools, and health care plans won't be able to deny claims for services provided at schools under SB106
- More than $3.1 million in grants will be available for K-12 computer science programs through HB227, money that will be matched by the technology sector.
- Campus safety is set to be improved under SB134. Known as Lauren's Law for Lauren McCluskey, the University of Utah student killed near her dorm by a man she briefly dated, the bill was supported by her father, Matt McCluskey.
- Some $100 million will be available to local school boards or charter boards to send to classrooms to improve student achievement under SB149, the Teacher and Student Success Act.
- Schools will have to offer human trafficking prevention training every other year to school personnel, parents and students under SB198.
- Parents will get at least 120 days notice before closing a school or changing school boundaries under SB245, a change made after an underperforming Kearns school was closed less than a month after the community was notified.
Steve Breinholt, Deseret News
- Utah will now have an official state reptile, the Gila monster, thanks to HB144, the final bill passed in the 2019 general session.
- The Utah Transit Authority officially keeps its name under SB72, which repeals an unpopular attempt by lawmakers last year that would have renamed the agency the Transit District of Utah.
- Navajo Code Talker Day will be celebrated on Aug. 14 under SB101, which also designates highway stretches in San Juan County to honor the Navajo Marines whose native language was an unbreakable World War II code.
- Utah Railroad Workers Day on May 10 will honor both those who built the transcontinental railroad and modern-day employees under HB397.
- Other special dates added to the calendar include May 11, made Dandy-Walker Syndrome Awareness Day in HB165 to draw attention to the congenital brain malformation, and Nov. 7, named Victims of Communism Memorial Day in HB116.
- Although SB132, which allows higher-alcohol beer to be sold in grocery and convenience stores will be in effect, sales won't start until November.
- Marriage will not be allowed in Utah before age 16, and before 18 without consent of parents and the court with HB234.