Among new laws taking effect in Minnesota today: It’s now a crime for someone to falsely state that the animal they have with them is a service animal in order to obtain certain privileges. State law is also cracking-down on so-called “skimming”: It’s a felony to access or attempt to access a gas pump, A-T-M or other point-of-sale terminal in order to attach an electronic device to collect credit or debit card information.
Minnesota’s “Move Over Law” is broadened beginning today. If there’s only one lane each direction, a motorist must now slow down when coming up on emergency, road maintenance and utility vehicles stopped on the roadside with warning lights on. Motorists must also slow down when it’s not possible to move over at least one lane. And a section of U-S Highway 12 in Wayzata is officially renamed today as the “Officer Bill Mathews Memorial Highway.” Wayzata Officer Mathews was fatally struck in September 2017 by an inattentive motorist while he was clearing debris from the highway.
A new law that takes effect in Minnesota today establishes a “bill of rights” for children in foster care, including the right to visit their siblings and be placed with them when possible. Unmarried parents seeking joint custody of their children may now use an expedited process if they agree on the terms of custody, rather than having to go to court. That option used to be available only to divorced parents.
And a new law requires every hotel and motel in Minnesota, except resorts, to train employees to identify sex trafficking if it occurs at the establishment. Minor employees, restaurant workers and those who don’t have direct contact with guests are exempt from the training requirement.