El Centro, CA -- With the start of the 2011-2012 fiscal year, new laws take effect today in California.
First off, shopping in California will cost less. Statewide, California sales tax dropped back down to 7.25%. Here locally, El Centro tax dropped back down 7.75% from 8.75%.
The sales tax dropped despite Governor Jerry Brown's effort to extend a temporary tax increase set back in 2009.
Another law put into effect today, carbon monoxide detectors are now required in many homes. El Centro Interim Fire Chief, Tim Reel, says, "the law that goes into effect today primarily deals with single family dwellings. If they have an attached garage they need one. Secondly, if they have appliances that run off of fossil fuels like natural gas or propane, they need one."
Reel says carbon monoxide detectors are important because carbon monoxide is odorless and invisible and could deadly.
Other laws include when you drive. A new law known as AB 2499 requires all driving tickets to stay on a drivers record.
California Department of Motor Vehicle officials say it keeps drivers that get tickets frequently accountable. DMV spokesman, Armando Botello says, "with this change in the law we have some kind of verification for DMV purposes where if someone wants to go a second time to traffic school within the 18 month period, now we can go and check the record and say no you cannot go anymore because you already went."
Although traffic tickets will stay on your driving record, it will not be visible to insurance companies.
Other laws taking effect in California includeHybrid car drivers. Those with yellow stickers can no longer drive solo in the carpool lanes. Additionally, your wallet will see some savings next time you pay your car registration. Car licensing fees were cut in half for this new fiscal year.
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