Abortion, drunken driving, animal welfare laws take effect

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CONCORD, New Hampshire (Associated Press) – The New Year brings new laws in New Hampshire, including an abortion ban passed as part of the state budget.

The budget that Gov. Chris Sununu signed into law in June contained a provision banning abortion after 24 weeks of pregnancy, with exceptions for the mother’s life or physical health. It takes effect January 1, and Democrats have already drafted legislation that seeks to repeal the new restrictions and create nationwide protections for abortion access. Some also want the right to make reproductive medicine decisions to be included as a constitutional right.

“Make no mistake, as of January 1, New Hampshire will deny women the dignity of making personal and private decisions, and instead engage government in medical choices,” Rep. Marjorie Smith, D-Durham, said at a news conference. advance this month.

Other new laws that take effect on January 1st include:

Tyler Shaw’s Law

Judges will be allowed to issue longer prison sentences for repeat drunk drivers who kill or cause harm to others under a new law named after a Concorde man who died in 2018.

Tyler Shaw was 20 when a drunk driver repeatedly drove off an exit on I-89 south, passed a stop sign and collided with Shaw’s truck, killing him.

Under the new law, anyone with a previous conviction for drunk driving and causing an accident that kills or seriously injures another person can be sentenced to 10 to 20 years in prison. Those who have been convicted twice or more can be sentenced to between 15 and 30 years in prison.


animal protection

Serving components for cats, dogs and wildebeest, lawmakers have passed three animal-related bills that go into effect Jan.

Removing a tracking collar or microchip from someone else’s dog is a misdemeanor. The bill, which makes dog theft a felony to commit a second crime, was motivated by what its proponents describe as the growing problem of “dog-flipping” where people steal dogs to sell for profit.

It would expand the state’s latest animal cruelty laws and make it illegal to beat, flog, torture or mutilate any wild animal, fish or bird. The third requires drivers who harm or kill cats to notify police or pet owners or face a $1,000 fine, the long-standing mandate for run-down dogs.

“While it’s not a huge budget item, these things really do matter,” Governor Chris Sununu said when he signed the bills at an animal shelter in Salem. “Not only are we not going to let these things pass, we can really do something about it. Animals are a bipartisan issue.”


sexual assault laws

Sex workers who report sexual assault will not be prosecuted for prostitution under a new law designed to encourage victims to come forward.

The law establishes state policy to protect sex workers from arrest, prosecution, and conviction for prostitution if they report that they or another person has been sexually assaulted.

Another new law, effective January 1, will increase the penalty for someone who pays to engage in sexual intercourse with a person under 16 years old.


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