With the beginning of the new year, a batch of laws passed during the 2017 legislative session have now taken effect. The 26 laws range from a revamped voter ID law to how much milk trucks can haul.
Mike Ward, Austin bureau chief for the Houston Chronicle says every voter ID law the legislature has tried to pass has ended up in court, and the new law is likely to end up there, as well.
“The legislature was trying to fix some technical issues with the old law that are being challenged in court, and that some lower court judges have ruled are problematic,” Ward says. “The basic issue is whether you require photo IDs for everybody, or whether there are certain exceptions, and if so, what those exceptions are.”
Ward says the updated law places slightly lighter ID requirements on voters, but that opponents of voter ID laws are likely to continue to mount objections.
The milk hauling law gives truckers the ability to carry more of the beverage per truck, making deliveries more efficient.
“I’m going to put this in the category of sort of special interest laws,” Ward says. That applies to a number of the other new laws that went into effect January 1.