New Florida laws going into effect July 1st
Come Monday, the way you drive, the cost of drugs, and your child's scholarship may all change thanks to a handful of new Florida laws going into effect.
Among them is bill SB 190 which raises the requirements for the Bright Futures scholarships. The Bright Futures "academic" scholarship covers full tuition and fees at Florida universities and colleges. Under the new law, a student's SAT score must be near 1330 instead of 1290.
For the "medallion" scholarship, which covers 75% of the costs, a student's SAT score must now be near 1200 instead of 1170.
There's also SB 1552. It's a red tide mitigation program that's kicking off with the state dedicating $3 million a year for six years from its general fund.
If you worry about the high price of your medications, bill HB 19 may be for you. Under HB 19, more affordable drugs can be imported into Florida from Canada and other countries, provided they're approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Governor Ron DeSantis' administration is hoping to combat the high costs of rising prescription medication by allowing Florida to pursue lower priced drugs on the Canadian and international markets.
And if you're one of the many still guilty of texting while driving, now's the time to stop.
"Now, what this new law does is it creates it a primary stop which means if we have probable cause to believe that you are texting on a mobile device, then we can conduct a traffic stop and do enforcement actions for that violation," said Lieutenant Eddie Elmore with the Florida Highway Patrol. Elmore adds violations can result in a fine and three points on your license.
The full list of laws going into effect July 1st are:
BRIGHT FUTURES ( SB 190 )
Requirements for Bright Futures scholarships get tougher. The "Academic" scholarship, covering tuition and fees entirely at state colleges and universities, will require a student's SAT to be near 1330 instead of 1290. The "Medallion," which covers 75 percent of the costs, would move to about 1200 from 1170.
TEXTING AND DRIVING ( HB 107 )
Sending messages on your phone, behind the wheel, will now be a primary offense. Law enforcement can pull you over texting and driving without needing another reason.
SCHOOLS OF HOPE
The "Schools of Hope" program gets bigger. Charter schools will be allowed to open near public schools that regularly perform poorly.
TESTING FOR TEACHERS ( SB 7070 )
The testing requirements for teachers to get certified get easier.
PRIVATE SCHOOL SCHOLARSHIPS ( SB 7070 )
Families of four, making $77,000 or less annually, get access to public funded scholarships for private schools.
TECH TRAINING ( HB 7071 )
Vocational and technical training in high schools gets encouragement through expanded apprenticeship and career planning programs.
RED TIDE ( SB 1552 )
The red tide mitigation program kicks off with Florida dedicated to giving $3 million per year for six years from its general fund.
GARDENING ( SB 82 )
Homeowners get the right to grow fruits and vegetables in front yard gardens.
CHEAPER DRUGS ( HB 19 )
More affordable drugs can be imported into Florida from Canada and other countries, provided they're approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
FIREFIGHTER BENEFITS ( SB )