New Rules: Arkansas Laws Affecting Business Reviewed By Fort Smith Chamber – News – Booneville Democrat – Arkansas News

New Rules: Arkansas Laws Affecting Business Reviewed By Fort Smith Chamber – News – Booneville Democrat – Arkansas News

Many new Arkansas laws adopted by the 91st General Assembly went into effect Tuesday.

Several others either went into effect earlier this year or will be effective later. Those deemed important to businesses were compiled by the Fort Smith Regional Chamber of Commerce and are as follows:

Unemployment insurance

HB 1405 (Act 734 by state Rep. Robin Lundstrum, R-Springdale, state Sen. Jim Hendren, R-Gravette, and 24 others) will reduce Arkansas employers’ unemployment insurance taxes by $50 million annually.

“It also reduces the unemployment insurance benefits from five months to four months to encourage those drawing unemployment benefits to look for work faster,” the chamber notes. Effecitve date: Most provisions, Jan. 1, 2018.

Minimum wage law

HB 1126 (Act 191 by state Rep. Charlie Collins, R-Fayetteville) amends the definition of “employer” to clarify that a natural person acting as a supervisor is not an employer and creates a one-year limitation period for discrimination, retaliation and interference claims. The bill also amends the hate crime section to eliminate claims arising out of employment relationship. Effective date: Aug. 1

Economics education

HB 1442 (Act 480 by state Rep. Andy Davis, R-Little Rock, Sen. Linda Chesterfield, D-Little Rock and 33 others) will amend the personal finance curriculum standard to include job seeking skills, soft job skills and employment benefits and require high school students to earn a course credit under this curriculum for graduation. Effective date: Aug. 1.

Workplace safety — medical marijuana

HB 1460 (Act 593 by state Reps. Carlton Wing, R-North Little Rock, and Doug…

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