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A Look at Some of the New Laws Going Into Effect July 1st


July 1st means many new state laws are now on the books.

Marijuana legalization has probably received the most headlines, but there are many other important laws going into effect.

Localities across Virginia can now set up a civilian police review board with subpoena power. Before, these boards could just make recommendations.

A requirement that state health facilities report to immigration authorities that they are caring for an undocumented individual has also been repealed.

Virginia is extending SNAP benefits and other family assistance programs.

Evidence about a defendant’s mental or intellectual state is now admissible in criminal trials. And, the state has also banned the so-called “panic defense” – which previously could have been used as justification for crimes like murder based on the perception of the victim’s sex, gender, gender identity or sexual orientation.

State lawmakers are expected back in Richmond for a special session beginning August 2nd. They’ll largely focus on what to do with federal pandemic response aid. But, other legislative matters – such as altering Virginia’s ban on masks – could be on the table.

You can find more information about new laws going into effect July 1st here.