Dozens of new laws will take effect in Oregon in the new year

Dozens of new laws will take effect in Oregon in the new year

PORTLAND, Ore. — As 2013 becomes 2014 on Wednesday, dozens of new laws will be taking effect across Oregon.

Expect a few higher fines and fees, new crimes to avoid committing and new workplace rules.

Tobacco taxes will go up, and you'll face a fine if you're caught smoking one of those more expensive cigarettes in a car with a minor.

Minors will be prohibited from tanning beds. Employers won't be allowed to demand access to their workers' social media accounts. Fines will go up for using a cellphone while driving.

Here's a look at a some of the wide variety of new laws that hit the books on Jan. 1:

— We start in the office with a new Oregon law that's getting a lot of attention online -- probably because it's all about what we do online. In 2014, your company, college or university won't be allowed to demand access to your personal social media accounts. That means the boss can't look at it, can't require your login info, and can't force you to be "friends" on that account.

— Teens might be a little paler at the beach this summer. That's because minors need a doctor's note starting in January to use a tanning bed. Research shows people under 30 who use tanning beds increase their risk of skin cancer by 75%. The argument we heard from some teens and businesses is that at tanning salons, at least somebody's monitoring teens tanning. Some teens told us if they can't hit the salon they'll find another way to get tan - like going to someone's house who has a tanning bed.

— Also concerning minors: In Oregon you can't smoke anymore while your kid is  in the car. It's a secondary offense, but your first ticket's $250 and the next is $500. The idea is that it's already illegal for kids under 18 to smoke, so why should they be exposed to those toxic chemicals in a confined space? The bill does not give smokers an exception for having the windows down.

— Standard fines for using a cellphone while driving will increase $50 to $160, and judges will be allowed to go as high as $500 — double the current maximum. So far in 2013, Oregon State Police troopers have nabbed 3,500 people for such violations and issued another 1,600 warnings, Lt. Gregg Hastings said. That's up from 2,151 citations and 1,878 warnings last year.

— Cigarette taxes will climb 13 cents to $1.31 a pack. The state Revenue Department says tobacco taxes bring in about $250 million a year to support the Oregon Health Plan and the state general fund. Most of the additional revenue will go to mental health services.

— Tying up a dog in a manner that causes an injury to the animal will be a crime.

— A rodeo event known as "horse roping" will be illegal. It's performed only at one rodeo in the state, in Jordan Valley, a town in the southeastern part of the state. Critics call the practice "horse tripping" and say it's cruel.

— Photo studios won't be allowed to offer ultrasound movies or photos as keepsakes to expecting parents. A new law will restrict "medical imaging" procedures to medical purposes ordered and interpreted by a licensed provider.

— Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder will be added to the list of conditions that qualify a patient for the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program. Lawmakers responded to advocates who said marijuana might help them minimize the effects of PTSD, such as flashbacks, anxiety and avoidance behaviors.

— Mammogram providers will be required to notify women who are discovered to have dense breast tissue. Experts say dense breast tissue — a low proportion of fat compared to breast and connective tissues — can make tumors more difficult to detect.

— Timber companies will be able to sue activists who try to interfere with logging activity on state forests.

— The minimum wage will go up to $9.10 per hour, an increase of 15 cents. This one's not a new law. Rather, it's a result of an older one that says the minimum wage is indexed to inflation.