FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — More than 100 new laws will go into effect July 1 in Indiana. The laws range from how teachers are evaluated to the age a minor can get married in Indiana.
Here’s a handful of the most notable new laws.
Drivers will have to put their phones away or utilize hand-free technology while behind the wheel of a moving vehicle. This law is an amendment to the current ban of texting and driving. (House Bill 1070)
This new law removes the mandate that annual teacher evaluations and linked pay increases be based on student iLearn test results. (House Bill 1002)
Tobacco and vaping smoking age:
Hoosiers under the age of 21 will be prohibited from buying or possessing cigarettes, electronic cigarettes or vaping products under state law as well as federal statutes. The fine for retailers who sell tobacco products to people underage will face a higher fine. New tobacco retailers also cannot sell or be located within 1,000 feet of a school. (Senate Bill 1)
911 dispatchers new classification:
Indiana’s 911 emergency dispatchers will now be classified as first responders rather than clerical workers. Additionally, the bill increase pressure on the federal government to increase benefits in treating mental conditions like PTSD. (House Bill 1198)
Five-year gun licensing fees:
For Hoosier and those who work in Indiana looking to get a hunting, target, or concealed carry license the four-year license has now become a five-year license. The changes also wave state and local fees have been waived. However, you still need to pay for fingerprinting. (House Bill 1284)
WANE 15’s Corinne Moore has more on what you should know about the free 5-year firearms licenses here.
Minimum age to marry:
The minimum age to marry in Indiana has increased to 16 years old from 15. Children ages 16 and 17 can only marry if their partner is no more than four years older and a juvenile court judge grants permission for the marriage. It also states that pregnancy or having a child isn’t by itself sufficient to grant marriage permission. (House Bill 1006).
Child sex crimes:
The statute of limitations for filing charges against perpetrators of sex crimes against children can be extended five years beyond the victim’s 31st birthday if prosecutors discover new DNA evidence, a recording of the crime or the perpetrators confesses. The deadline for victims to seek assistance from the Violent Crimes Victim Compensation Fund also is extended. (Senate Bill 109)
Employers are prohibited from mandating the implantation of any identity or tracking device in a worker or job candidate unless the person voluntarily consents to have something put into their body. (House Bill 1143)
Schools must test for lead
The new law requires each person or entity who has authority over a school building to test the drinking water in the school building before January 1, 2023, to determine if the water has high levels of lead. (House Bill 1265)
Background check for child care workers
Employees and volunteers of a child care facility who may be present on the grounds of the child care facility during operating hours are now required to submit a national criminal history background check. Under the current law, only employees and volunteers who have direct contact with children must submit a background check. (House Bill 1264)
To learn more and see which bills are becoming laws on July 1, click here.