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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

New California laws go into effect starting July 1, including sale of drug test kits at bars

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Starting July 1, new laws go into effect in California. Bars and nightclubs must have drug testing devices available, and people who buy guns will have to pay an additional 11% state tax. Restaurants and vacation rentals will be prohibited from charging hidden fees.

Here are the details of the new laws coming into effect.

Sale of drug testing devices in bars (AB 1013)
Bars and nightclubs licensed to serve alcohol in public must provide drug testing kits and sell them to customers at reasonable prices. They must also post a notice that the testing devices are available for purchase. The drug test kit can detect the presence of drugs including flunitrazepam (aka roofies) and ketamine. This law applies to businesses that sell alcohol and prohibits entry for minors.

Gun tax (AB 28)
People who buy firearms and ammunition in California will have to pay a tax of an additional 11% of the gross receipts. California is the first state in the nation to impose such a tax. Currently, federal taxes on gun purchases range from 10 to 11%. California expects the new tax will effectively control guns. The bill is estimated to raise about $160 million in additional tax revenue annually. California will use the tax to fund gun violence prevention programs.


A row of glasses with various drinks on a wooden bar counter
On July 1, 2024, the new law requiring bars and nightclubs to make drug testing devices available will go into effect.


Hidden fees ban (SB 478)
Restaurants and vacation rentals must include all fees and charges upfront. This law aims to stop the recent practice of popular restaurants and lodging establishments charging “junk fees” on top of the sales price. Specifically, restaurants must list all prices on the menu and cannot add hidden charges to the bill after customers have eaten.

Public schools must provide menstrual products (AB 367)
Free menstrual products currently provided by public schools to students in grades 6-12 will be expanded to grades 3-12. Free menstrual products will also be available at California State University and each community college district.

Right to Repair (SB 244)
The bill requires electronics manufacturers to provide a fair marketplace for documentation, spare parts, and tools for future repairs when selling products over $50. For products sold for $100 or more, they must make repair parts and instructions available for seven years after manufacture. The law applies to cell phones, laptops, tablets, and other electronic products manufactured and sold in California on or after July 1, 2021.

Security Deposit Cap (AB 12)
California landlords will not be able to ask for a security deposit of more than one month’s rent. Previously, landlords could require a two-month security deposit for unfurnished units and a three-month security deposit for furnished units in addition to the first month’s rent.

BY HYOUNGJAE KIM, HOONSIK WOO [kim.ian@koreadaily.com]