Fuzzy cube lastly can be free to dangle in Illinois.

Beginning Monday, police there not can be allowed to pull over motorists solely as a result of they’ve one thing hanging from the rearview mirror of the windshield. Which means air fresheners, parking placards and, sure, even these cube are truthful sport to hold.

The revised Illinois windshield rule is one in every of lots of of latest legal guidelines taking impact with the brand new 12 months in states throughout the U.S. Whereas some could appear a bit pedestrian, others have actual sensible results or contact on controversial points akin to restrictions on weapons and medical therapies for transgender folks.

Although the unique Illinois windshield legislation was meant to enhance roadway security, it got here to be seen by some as an excuse for pulling over drivers. The brand new legislation nonetheless prohibits objects that hinder a driver’s view however forbids legislation enforcement officers from conducting stops or searches solely due to suspected violations.

“With this new legislation, we’re sending a robust message that the state doesn’t tolerate racial profiling or different types of discrimination,” stated Democratic state Sen. Christopher Belt, one of many invoice’s sponsors.

One other new Illinois legislation seeks to stifle a extra fashionable type of distracted driving by prohibiting folks from participating in video conferences or scanning social media whereas behind the wheel.


A number of states have new legal guidelines regulating weapons and on-line exercise.

A Minnesota legislation will permit authorities to ask courts for “ extreme risk protection orders ” to briefly take weapons from folks deemed to be an imminent menace to others or themselves. Minnesota can be a minimum of the twentieth state with such a red-flag legislation.

Colorado will turn into one in every of a dozen states banning so-called ghost guns. The brand new legislation prohibits firearms which might be assembled at dwelling or 3D-printed with out serial numbers, practices which have allowed house owners to evade background checks.

The U.S. Supreme Court docket declined to block an Illinois legislation from taking impact Monday that bans high-powered semiautomatic rifles and high-capacity magazines. However a federal choose lately blocked a California law that will have banned carrying hid weapons in lots of public locations.

A number of state legal guidelines delve into acceptable on-line actions. A new Connecticut law requires on-line relationship operators to undertake insurance policies for dealing with harassment reviews by or between customers.

A North Carolina legislation would require pornographic web site operators to verify viewers are a minimum of 18 years outdated by utilizing a commercially accessible database. The legislation lets mother and father sue firms if their youngsters had been allowed to entry the pornography. One other new Illinois legislation will permit lawsuits from victims of deepfake pornography, by which movies or photographs are manipulated with out their consent.


Over the previous few years, there was a serious push by conservatives to limit entry to gender-affirming therapies for transgender minors. Bans are on the books in 22 states, together with some the place judges have paused enforcement as they think about challenges to the insurance policies.

New bans on entry for minors to puberty blockers, hormone remedy and surgical procedure, which is uncommon, are scheduled to take impact Jan. 1 in Idaho, Louisiana and West Virginia. The West Virginia law accommodates an exception: Teenagers might nonetheless entry therapy with parental consent and a analysis of extreme gender dysphoria from two docs.

Whereas many Republican-led legislatures have imposed restrictions, many Democrat-dominated states have responded with transgender protections. A legislation taking impact Monday in Hawaii requires new marriage certificates to be issued to individuals who request to vary how their intercourse is listed. The state is also replacing gender-specific terms in state legislation; “mom” is being changed with “birthing mum or dad” and “father” with “non-birthing mum or dad.”

In Colorado, new buildings wholly or partly owned by authorities entities can be required to have on each ground the place there are public restrooms a minimum of one that doesn’t specify the gender of the customers.

The conservative push on LGBTQ+ insurance policies additionally has include efforts to maintain sure books out of college or public libraries. An Indiana law taking impact makes it simpler for fogeys and others to problem books in class libraries. In contrast, a new Illinois law would block state funding for public libraries that ban or prohibit books.


The brand new 12 months brings a wide range of new legal guidelines on taxes and wages — perennial points for state governments.

Greater than 20 states will elevate minimal wages for staff, additional widening the hole between state necessities and the federal minimal, which has been static at $7.25 an hour since July 2009. In a number of states, the brand new minimal wage will greater than double that charge.

Maryland’s minimal wage can be set at $15 an hour. In New Jersey, it is going to be $15.13 an hour for many staff. In Connecticut, $15.69 per hour. In New York Metropolis, $16 an hour, although it is going to be $15 in a lot of the remainder of the state. California’s statewide minimal wage additionally will rise to $16 per hour. And in Washington, the minimal charge can be $16.28.

Residents in some states will acquire cash by paying much less in taxes, persevering with a three-year pattern by which practically each state has lowered, rebated or suspended some sort of broad-based tax.

In Kansas, the sales tax on groceries will drop from 4% to 2% in its subsequent step towards eventual elimination, producing a financial savings of $208 yearly for a household spending a mean of $200 weekly on groceries.

About 1 million tax filers are anticipated to profit from Connecticut’s first income tax rate reduction because the mid-Nineties. Decrease-income staff and retirees additionally stand to profit from expanded tax breaks.

Missouri additionally will reduce its income tax rate whereas increasing tax exemptions for Social Safety advantages and navy coaching pay. Companies will be capable of declare tax credit for hiring interns or apprentices.

Alabama will exempt overtime pay from the state’s revenue tax, although that lasts solely till June 2025 except renewed by lawmakers.

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