DENVER —There are several new laws and changes that start on January 1 in Colorado.
The minimum wage will go from $9.30 an hour to $10.20 an hour beginning January 1. The increase is part of Amendment 70 passed by voters in 2016. The amendment requires the state to increase the minimum wage by $0.90 each year until the year 2020 when it will reach $12 an hour.
New consequences for hit-and-run drivers
Starting Jan. 1, drivers who are proven to have left the scene of an accident, or did not immediately return to the scene of one involving injury or death, are liable to have their driver’s license suspended.
The new law forces anyone involved in a crash to stop as soon as possible or to immediately return to the scene of the crash. They must provide their name, address and vehicle registration number to the other parties, and must give “reasonable assistance” to any people injured in the crash.
People are also now required to report the location of the crash to local police.
New marijuana growing rules
Colorado law enforcement and marijuana growers will have to make some adjustments regarding marijuana growing beginning Jan. 1.
The new law will cap the number of plants allowed for recreational users to only 12 per house or “residential property,” and will cap the number of plants for medical marijuana growers and caregivers at 24.
The law will allow local jurisdictions and municipalities to enact rules to allow growers to raise more plants than the statewide limit, however.
House Bill 1220 will also allow district attorneys to charge people who break the new plant limit law.
A first offense involving more than 12 plants will be considered a level 1 petty drug offense punishable by a fine of up to $1,000.
HB17-1231: Restructures powers for market examinations of insurance companies
HB17-1302: Creates criminal charges for juvenile sexting and specifies severity for different situations
HB17-1338: Municipal courts need to be made aware of persons detained on municipal holds within four hours. The bill also sets other requirements for handling municipal holds
HB16-1387: Most health benefits plans must provide coverage for severe protein allergic conditions
SB17-065: Health care prices for direct purchase must be made available to the public
SB17-088: Health insurers must develop standards for selecting health care providers for its network and tiering providers within a tiered network.
SB17-216: Continues the Fair Debt Collections Act through 2028.
SB17-243: Continues motorcycle operator safety training program, transfers operation to chief of the state patrol.
SB16-016: Modifying the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District