HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — It’s officially 2023! Several new laws were enacted on Jan. 1 in Connecticut.

A new tax on trucks will impact an industry that employs 7 million people and moves 10 billion tons of freight.

“This passed in June of 2021, mid-November of this year, guidance came out from DRS [Department of Revenue Services] on the exact compliance elements that our carriers would have to get up to speed on. And it has been a very tight timeframe for them to try and comply with,” John Blair, the new president of the Motor Transport Association of Connecticut, explained.

Blair said truckers would pay anywhere from 2.5 cents a mile to 17.5 cents, depending on the truck’s weight.

The state tax department’s revenues will go into the special transportation fund to fix roads and bridges and pay for Connecticut’s portion of federal infrastructure grants.

Blair said the tax would increase the cost of goods the trucks transport.

“It’s a simple business equation that will get passed along the way, eventually, to the consumers. And certainly, in a time like this, you know, consumer goods are very high in all places we shop. This is only going to make them go higher,” Blair said.

Adult use of cannabis is now allowed. Cannabis possession charges will be cleared from some residents’ criminal records. Gov. Ned Lamont (D-Conn.) has said some erasures could be delayed until the summer.

In tandem, the Clean Slate Law that also erases criminal records for nearly 280,000 people will take place.

The 5-cent return on teas, hard seltzers, energy drinks, and coffee will begin.

A new law aligning state standards with federal ones is expected to trigger more home inspections to protect kids who may live in older homes with lead paint.

Breast and ovarian cancer screening coverage is expanded. Certain commercial health insurance will be required to cover several procedures and screenings, including mammograms, ultrasounds, MRIs, breast biopsies, breast reconstruction surgery, and specific genetic testing.

Lawmakers will get a pay raise for the first time in decades, with base pay rising from $28,000 to $40,000.

There are also several items that go into effect for the child mental health bill passed last legislative session.

Other laws going into effect in January 2023 concern:

  • Establishment of a Hate Crimes Investigative Unit within the Connecticut State Police – the unit would deal with crimes regarding race, religion, ethnicity, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity or expression. Offenses would include the deprivation of rights, desecration of property, ridiculing, threatening, stalking, and intimidation.
  • Explanations of benefits – certain health insurance carriers and third-party administrators are required to provide an explanation of benefits to covered individuals in clear language and allow them to make written selections about the explanation of benefits
  • The use of chlorpyrifos – bars the use of chlorpyrifos on golf courses and in cosmetic or nonagricultural uses
  • Revisions to certain environment-related statutes – permits pesticides to be registered every year rather than every five, new radiation regulation, changes to noise regulation, and stationary air pollution regulation

Click here to see the full list of new laws that will be enacted in Connecticut on Jan. 1, 2023.