ATLANTA — With the start of the new year, Georgians will have a handful of new laws in place, signed by Gov. Brian Kemp in the last few months.
While most of Georgia's new laws took effect back in July, at the end of the legislative session, a few were delayed until Jan. 1 of next near.
Increased tax credit limit for contributions to rural hospitals
Essentially, this law will raise the cap on income tax credits for rural hospitals. Right now, the tax credit sits at $60 million but now they will be raised to $75 million.
Kemp and other legislatures hope this new law will strengthen Georgia's healthcare system in rural communities.
Food truck permitting
Ok, this one is a little more fun. Essentially, this new law will allow food trucks to sell tasty treats in any county in Georgia.
As it stands, just because your favorite food truck has ability to set up shop in one county, doesn't mean they can just drive over to the next county and do business.
According to NBC affiliate WSAV, obtaining a new permit can often cost mobile businesses more money out of pocket.
WSAV also noted that under the new law, any county can still conduct health inspection on these food trucks, but will now charge businesses less money to do so. Health inspectors can also verify permits and paperwork using the Department of Public Health database.
Inform consumers act
This law is designed to protect Georgians who accidently purchase stolen or counterfeit goods and to stop criminals from selling such items online.
"Online marketplaces" will now have to "collect, verify and disclose" particular information from high-volume, third-party sellers.
What is a high volume, third-party seller? Essentially, that's anyone who does 200 or more transactions, resulting in $5,000 or more during a continuous 12-month period.
The information that these marketplaces will have to gather from sellers and verify includes:
- Bank account numbers
- Government-issued ID
- Tax identification numbers
- Contact information
In addition, the sellers' name and contact information must be made available to consumers. There also needs to be a way, both electronically and by phone, for customers to report any suspicious activity.
This law will streamline fees telephone companies pay cities and towns, if they don't have retail space or customers in the area. There will now be a one-time payment instead of yearly payments.