Each year, new bills are proposed and voted on in the House and Senate. This legislation then moves to the desk of our current Mississippi governor, Tate Reeves, to sign them into law.
It’s important to be an informed and law-abiding citizen, which is why we’re here to recap some of the more notable laws that went into effect in 2022. We’ll then share some of the laws set to go into effect as we ring in the new year. We’ll then wrap up this piece by looking ahead to some legislation up for debate in the new year.
Recap of Notable Mississippi Laws Enacted in 2022
Over the past year, a few key pieces of legislation have been signed into law that you should be aware of, including:
The Equal Pay for Equal Work Act
A noteworthy Mississippi law that went into effect this past July was the Equal Pay for Equal Work Act. It aims to equalize the playing field between women and men when it comes to historic wage disparities that have existed between the genders.
The new law also created a clear legal pathway for employees to follow in reporting employer violations of this Mississippi gender pay gap elimination law.
The Pregnancy Resource Act
House Bill (HB) 1685 went into effect in July 2022. It provides $3.5 million in tax credits to Mississippi corporations that donate to pregnancy resource centers.
Critical Race Theory
Governor Reeves signed into law Senate Bill (SB) 2113, which forbids all schools up through university-level from providing any instruction to students that champions any religion, race, sex, national origin, or ethnicity as superior or inferior to others.
Each of the above laws went into effect immediately after our governor signed them into law or shortly thereafter.
New Mississippi Laws Set To Go Into Effect in 2023
The following are new laws that have already been signed off on by Governor Reeves yet were set to be enacted at a later date. Two laws that will go into effect in Mississippi at the turn of the new year in 2023 include:
The Mississippi Tax Freedom Act of 2022
On April 5, 2022, Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves signed the Mississippi Tax Freedom Act of 2022 (HB 532) into law which will do away with the 4% assessment on residents’ first $5,000 in taxable income. Any remaining income a resident receives beyond that $5,000 threshold has historically been taxed at a 5% tax rate; however, it will be reduced by 0.3% to 4.7% this upcoming year (2023).
The Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act
Mississippi became the 37th state in the U.S. to decriminalize the possession of medical marijuana by its cardholding residents. Our governor signed off on SB 2095 this past February. The Mississippi Department of Human Services (MDHS) began accepting its first applications for those wishing to receive a medical marijuana card in June.
Medical marijuana is slated to hit our state’s dispensary shelves in Jan. 2023. According to National Public Radio (NPR), Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act entitles cardholding residents to buy up to three ounces of medical marijuana monthly in 3.5-gram increments every six days.
Other legislative actions were proposed in 2022, but did not gain enough votes in the Mississippi Senate and the House to make it to the governor’s desk. Some of those are slated to be reintroduced in front of our state’s legislative bodies again this upcoming year (2023).
Mississippi Bills Lawmakers Hope To See Signed Into Law in 2023
Some of the proposed bills many state lawmakers and our governor are hoping to prioritize in the new year include ones that focus on:
- Doing away with the Mississippi state income tax altogether
- Giving parents more of a say over what their kids are taught in school through changes to the “Patriotic Education Fund” and “Parents’ Bill of Rights” initiatives
- Increasing funding for mental health projects such as a crisis stabilization center
- Allocating increased funding for Capitol Police in our state’s capital Jackson to further reduce crime rates
- Expanding the “Mississippi School Safety Guardian Program,” which would provide a $500 monthly credit to employees in school districts that are willing to undergo active shooter training and carry a firearm in the educational setting
- Increasing the financial penalty assessed when criminals flee capture by law enforcement
How the Implementation of New Mississippi Laws Impacts You
It’s unlikely that each law already enacted, set to go into effect soon, or that is up for debate will be significant to all of our state’s residents. However, since our lawmakers represent our interests and our taxpayer funding supports these initiatives, it’s important to be aware of what’s happening.
That’s the same perspective our personal injury attorneys at Pittman Roberts & Welsh, PLLC have when working with clients who have suffered harm due to another party’s negligence, such as Jackson car accident victims. We do our best to treat our clients’ cases with the utmost care and concern, to ensure they have a clear understanding of their legal rights and options, and fiercely advocate for them to ensure they receive fair compensation when they need it most.
Reach out to us if you need qualified legal advice from an experienced personal injury attorney in Jackson, MS. Everyone on our Pittman Roberts & Welsh, PLLC law firm’s team is eager to help you seek justice.