New laws going into effect across Colorado Monday

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Posted at 12:47 PM, Jul 01, 2024

Colorado legislators had a busy session, passing several new laws out of both chambers that were signed by Gov. Jared Polis. They now go into effect Monday. Here are seven of the most notable ones.

1. There will be changes to what evidence is allowed to be used in criminal court cases involving alleged victims of sexual abuse. HB24-1072 specifically prohibits the use of evidence like a victim's hairstyle or what they were wearing in the proceeding.

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2. There will now be a ban on firearms in state legislative buildings, government buildings and courthouses. Under SB24-131, counties can opt out, which Douglas County already has voted to do so.

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3. Gender identity and gender expression will now be included as basis for a bias-motivated crime. SB24-189 also redefines sexual orientation in terms of the motivation behind bias-motivated crimes.

4. As part of the Colorado Privacy Act, state residents can now use Global Privacy Control to opt out of websites from tracking personal information they don't need.

"For example, if you're going on to Google Maps, then it makes sense that they're actually they know where you are because you're asking them how to get from point A to point B, " Colorado Public Interest Reseaerch Group (CoPIRG) Executive Director Danny Katz explained. "But it they shouldn't need your birth date, or your age, or your height, or anything else to be able to perform that basic service."

However, you need a new browser extension to tell websites not to track this unnecessary data.

"Part of that law required that the Colorado Attorney General's office work to identify a system that you could put on your browser that would communicate to all these websites whether you want to opt out of any of the non essential data collection," Katz explained. "When you go and you add this this control into your browser, it's an opt out mechanism, and it communicates that to websites, and those websites are supposed to abide by that communication."

Because there are so many different browsers, CoPIRG has a website with directions on how to add the extension.

"That should cut down on how many times you need to then go into every privacy agreement, or setting on every website, and manually check all the different things that you want to opt out of," Katz said.

New laws in Colorado include protecting personal data

5. City and county governments are prohibited from enforcing occupancy limits on families and "unrelated roommates," except for health and safety reasons or affordable housing rules, under HB24-1007.

6. Another wave of regulations outlined by SB23-253 goes into effect after the first round began Jan. 1 enacting standards for products that are labeled "compostable."

On Monday, only products certified by a recognized, independent, outside agency can be called compostable. The product must also comply with specific labeling standards that make it immediately distinguishable as compostable.

In January, the law enacted rules that prohibited companies from using tinting, color schemes, labels or words that make it appear as though it's compostable. The same goes for images that could be "reasonably anticipated to mislead consumers into believing that the product is compostable," SB23-253 reads. The business also can't use any words, labeling or images that "imply the plastic product will eventually break down, fragment, biodegrade or decompose in a landfill."

7. Images generated by artificial intelligence in political ads will now be regulated. HB24-1147 requires candidates for elected office disclose the use of "deepfakes."

New laws going into effect across Colorado Monday