New Kansas Laws That Take Effect July 1

KSCB News - July 1, 2016 3:01 pm

Bills signed by Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback in the 2016 legislative session go into effect Friday (July 1). The laws include measures to allow state and municipal employees to conceal and carry on the job, age restrictions on tanning beds and criminalizing the use of drones for stalking or harassing people.

Below are summaries of a few of the new laws taking effect Friday:

* Among several changes to firearms laws in House Bill 2502, public employees working for municipalities or the state will be able to conceal and carry guns on the job. This bill does not apply to private companies. More on HB 2502 here

* Starting Friday, there will be a ban in the state for anyone under the age of 18 to use tanning beds. Supporters of the law say it should cut the risk of skin cancer for young Kansans. Critics say the decision on tanning for minors should be left up to parents.

* A reduction for first-time marijuana offenses takes effect Friday. The maximum sentence for first-time marijuana possession will be cut in half from up to one year in jail to six months.

* On July 1, a law goes into effect officially making it illegal to use a drone to stalk or harass people. The law expands the definition of harassment in the state’s Protection from Stalking Act to include “flying a drone over or near any dwelling, occupied vehicle or other place where one many reasonably expect to be safe from uninvited intrusion or surveillance.”

* A law addressing “revenge porn,” taking effect July 1, states that anyone who posts nude photos or videos online of another person without their consent, could now face criminal prosecution.

* In an effort for more transparency in Kansas government, a bill taking effect July 1 makes private emails from public officials pertaining to public business subject to the Kansas Open Records Act.

* Relating to public universities and the subject of religious freedom, a new law taking effect July 1 now allows religious-based campus groups to restrict their membership to people who share their beliefs. The law does not impact private universities.


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