New laws kick in Thursday

Brewer signed 338 bills from legislative session

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer

KINGMAN - Some of the rules in the state are changing Thursday, the general effective date for most of the bills passed by the Arizona Legislature and signed by Gov. Jan Brewer this year.

According to the League of Arizona Cities and Towns, 1,233 bills and 169 memorials and resolutions were introduced in the Legislature last session. The Legislature passed 352 bills on to the governor for her signature. Brewer signed 338 bills and vetoed 14. The Legislature also passed 33 memorials and resolutions on to the Secretary of State's office.

Most of the bills passed by the Legislature and signed by the governor go into effect 90 days after the Legislature adjourns, which is July 29 this year.

Some of the bills signed by the governor have an emergency clause that causes the bill to become law as soon as she signs it. Bills that deal with appropriations or taxes, such as the state budget, are also effective as soon the governor signs them.

The Legislature can also set an effective date in a bill, which allows the bill, once the governor signs it, to go into effect either before or after the Legislature adjourns.

The major bills going into effect on Thursday include:

SB 1070 and HB 2162: SB1070 allows a law enforcement officer to question a person pulled over for another offense about their immigration status if the officer suspects the person might be in the country illegally. HB 2162 further defined several sections in SB 1070, stating that officers cannot use racial profiling in order to question a person about their immigration status.

SB 1108: This law allows Arizona residents to carry a concealed weapon without a permit.

HB 2629: The law prevents local governments from collecting and keeping personal information on gun owners who leave their weapons in lock boxes before entering public buildings.

Some of the major bills coming into effect later this year are:

HB 2246: The bill changes the fireworks laws in the state and goes into effect on Dec. 1. It allows residents to purchase or sell permissible consumer fireworks including ground and hand-held sparkling devices; cylindrical and cone fountains; illuminating torches; wheels; ground spinners; flitter sparklers; toy smoke devices; wire sparklers or dipped sticks; multiple tube fireworks devices and pyrotechnic articles.

It does not permit residents to purchase or sell any firework that is designed or intended to rise into the air and explode or to detonate in the air, including bottle rockets, sky rockets, missile-type rockets, helicopters, torpedoes, roman candles and jumping jacks.

There is a $1,000 fine for each incident where a resident uses a prohibited firework.

SB1286: The bill changes the way schools are graded on student achievement and goes into effect on Aug. 31, 2011. It changes the grades from "excelling, highly performing, performing, underperforming, or failing" to a letter grade such as A, B, C, D, or F.

HB 2281: The bill prevents schools from teaching classes that promote the overthrow of the U.S. government or promote resentment toward a specific class or race of people. The law goes into effect Dec. 31.

Bills that have already become law include:

HB 2491: The law allows cities to use the majority of the number of votes cast in an election to determine the winner of an election, rather than the majority of voters in the area. The bill became law on April 14.

HB 2001: The "I didn't pay enough" bill allows taxpayers to voluntarily donate money to the state general fund. The bill became law on Jan. 1.

For more information on the bills, visit www.azleg.gov and click on the link "session laws."