New laws in Mississippi began July 1

From staff reports

The Mississippi State Legislature recently passed laws during the 2012 regular session that took effect on July 1, 2012. Each year the legislature goes into session to make laws, change laws or get rid of rules for the betterment of the residents of Mississippi.

With the legislature introducing over 3,000 bills and resolutions in 2012 most came up short in passing. Those that did pass, many of them were implemented July 1.

The new laws that took effect July 1 may affect nearly every aspect of life in Mississippi, from voting to women’s health to children’s safety to crime and punishment.

Here is a list of some of those laws that may have an immediate effect on the residents of Mississippi.

• Child Protection Act of 2012: This law requires mandatory reporting of sex crimes against minors. • Sunshine Act: This law requires detailed time and expense records to be maintained by outside counsel, to place certain restrictions upon contingent fee contracts for legal services with outside counsel, to revise the requirements for the case docket to be kept by the Attorney General, to require the Attorney General to authorize outside counsel under certain circumstances, to conform state agency payment for legal services to the tenor of this act. • Beer Increase in the amount of alcohol that beer may contain from 5 percent by weight to 8 percent by weight. • School property and facilities: Authorize shared use agreements for public recreation and sports. This law will authorize local school boards to allow school property to be used by the public during nonschool hours for recreation and sports. • DUI: Create child care endangerment provision. This law creates an offense of DUI child endangerment and provide penalties for violations.

There were other additional laws passed during the regular session. For a list of all of them, you may visit www.billstatus.ls.ms.us.