On January 1st, 2014 hundreds of new laws take effect - impacting labor, economy, the environment and many more aspects of society. We've collected stories about the new legislation; where it comes from and how it impacts Californians. Check back for more stories through the first week of January.

Capital Public Radio News Reports

  • New Laws 2014 Interactive Graphic

    Monday, January 06, 2014

    With all the new laws taking effect in California this year we wanted a quick and fun way to share the stories with our listeners. Explore the new legislation from teen drivers to immigration within this interactive graphic.

  • No More Tickets At Broken Meters

    Thursday, January 02, 2014

    California cities will be prohibited from ticketing people who park at broken parking meters. A new law for 2014 nullifies any city ordinance that had allowed the practice.

  • m kasahara / Flickr

    Remodeling Home May Mean Upgrading Plumbing

    Thursday, January 02, 2014

    Californians who want to remodel a home built before 1994 may have to agree to install water-efficient plumbing in order to obtain a building permit. The 2009 law that takes effect in January is creating some confusion in the building industry.

  • Wikimedia/Immigration & Customs Enforcement

    California Counties Complying with New Trust Act Law

    Thursday, January 02, 2014

    Some local California law enforcement agencies say they won’t have to adjust their policies much under the Trust Act -- a new law prohibiting counties from holding undocumented offenders on non-serious charges for federal immigration police.

  • New Laws: Immigrant Worker Protections

    Monday, December 30, 2013

    New laws intended to protect undocumented immigrant workers from threats of deportation are about to take effect in California.

  • New In 2014: Training For Recyclers

    Monday, December 30, 2013

    After January first, new California recycling center owners must complete mandatory training. The State hopes to save $8 million as a result.

  • Lordjim / Flickr

    New Laws: Teen Drivers And Texting

    Monday, December 23, 2013

    If you’re using a voice-activated hands-free device to text while driving, you’re not doing anything illegal. That’ll change for teenagers in the New Year.


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New Laws 2013
From a new law giving innmates sentenced as teenagers a second chance, to one protecting some homeowners from foreclosure to one allowing some homemade foods to be sold.

bottlesNew Laws 2012
From a law banning alcohol sales at grocery store self-checkouts to one expanding summer school to another governing the use of indoor tanning beds.

New Laws For Motorists

  • AMBER ALERT: Expansion (AB 535, Quirk): This law requires law enforcement to request activation of the AMBER Alerts after receiving a report that a child has been taken abducted by anyone, including a custodial parent or guardian, who may cause serious bodily injury or death to the child.
  • BICYCLES: Passing Distance (AB 1371, Bradford): This law prohibits motorists from passing a bicycle with less than three feet between any part of the vehicle and any part of the bicycle or driver.  When three feet is not possible, the motor vehicle must slow to a reasonable and prudent speed and only pass when no danger is present to the bicyclist. Failing to do so can incur a fine, regardless of a collision or not. This law will go into effect September 16, 2014.
  • CHARTER BUS CARRIERS:  Limousines:  Emergency Exits (SB 109, Corbett): By January 1st, 2016, every limousine that has been modified or extended to accommodate additional passengers shall have two rear doors and one or two internally removable rear emergency windows. If such modifications occurred on or after July of 2015, these requirements apply immediately after July 1st, 2015. All new limousines manufactured after January 1st, 2015 must meet these requirements as well.
  • HIGH OCCUPANCY VEHICLE LANES (AB 266 / SB 286, Yee / Blumenfield): Together these laws extend sunset dates for low emission, zero emission vehicles to operate in high occupancy vehicle lanes (HOV) without meeting occupancy requirements to January 1, 2019.
  • HIT AND RUN: Statute of Limitations (AB 184, Gatto): This law extends the statute of limitations for hit-and-run collisions in which death or permanent, serious injury was a result.  A criminal complaint may be filed within three years of the offense, or one year after the person was initially identified by law enforcement as a suspect in the commission of the offense, which ever comes later, but in no case more than six years after the offense.
  • REGISTRATION FEES: Vehicle Theft (AB 767, Levine): This law authorizes counties to increase registration fees by $1 for passenger vehicles and $2 for commercial vehicles to fund programs related to vehicle theft crimes in those counties.
  • SEARCH WARRANTS: Chemical Tests (SB 717, DeSaulnier): This amendment to current law authorizes the issuance of a search warrant to draw blood from a person in a reasonable, medically approved manner, to show that the person violated misdemeanor DUI provisions when that person has refused an officer’s request to submit to, or has failed to complete, a blood test. This law has been operative since September 20, 2013.
  • TEEN DRIVERS (SB 194, Galgiani): This law prohibits a person who is under 18 years of age from using an electronic wireless communications device to write, send, or read a text-based communication while driving, even if it is equipped with a hands-free device.

    For complete information on chaptered bills enacted in 2013, please refer to the Legislative Counsel website at

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