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Here is a selected list of statutes that became effective on January 1, 2017.

M.G.L. c. 40R, “Smart Growth Zoning and Housing Production.”  Originally added by St. 2004, c. 149 § 92, M.G.L. c. 40R has been extensively revised. There are changes to § § 2-12 and § 14. Also changes to M.G.L. c. 40 § 60 may be related.

Tax Law Changes, affecting local (municipal) taxation. M.G.L. c. 58 § 2 and M.G.L. c. 59 § § 2D, 5, 11, 39, 41.

M.G.L. c. 66, “Public Records” law, extensively revised. This is an old law, but there were changes to 12 sections that will become effective Jan. 1. Also, the definition of “public records” in paragraph 25 of  M.G.L. c. 4 § 7 has been changed. There has been an additional section added in M.G.L. c. 10 § 35DDD to establish a “Public Records Assistance Fund.” In “Updated Public Records Law” , the Secretary of the Commonwealth outlines some of the key provisions that have changed.

M.G.L. c. 94G, “Drug Stewardship Program.” This is a new law, a totally new chapter. Pharmaceutical companies will be required to participate in a program intended to facilitate the disposal of unwanted drugs, to be administered by the Department of Public Health.

Health Care Law. M.G.L. c. 118I, “Health Information Technology, § 6 “Patients electronic access to health records” and § 7 “Fully interoperable electronic health records systems connecting to statewide health information exchange”. These changes are “effective Jan. 1, 2017” in legislation passed in 2012.

M.G.L. c. 151 § 1, “Oppressive and unreasonable wages; validity of contracts” [Minimum wage]
effective until January 1, 2016, A wage of less than $9.00 per hour, in any occupation, as defined in this chapter, shall conclusively be presumed to be oppressive and unreasonable…
effective January 1, 2016, A wage of less than $10.00 per hour, in any occupation, as defined in this chapter, shall conclusively be presumed to be oppressive and unreasonable…
effective January 1, 2017, A wage of less than $11.00 per hour, in any occupation, as defined in this chapter, shall conclusively be presumed to be oppressive and unreasonable…

M.G.L. c. 151 § 7, “Investigation and classification of employments…”
[Tipped employee minimum wage]
until January 1, 2016, …the cash wage paid such [tipped] employee which for purposes of such determination shall be not less than $3.00.
effective January 1, 2016,… the cash wage paid such [tipped] employee which for purposes of such determination shall be not less than $3.35.
effective January 1, 2017,… the cash wage paid such [tipped] employee which for purposes of such determination shall be not less than $3.75.

Minimum wage  info from a Jan. 21, 2016 blog post.

M.G.L. c. 268B § 3, “Financial Disclosure by Certain Public Officials and Employees.” Adds an electronic option for disclosure of records by the State Ethics Commission.

All Massachusetts statutes are available at the Legislature’s website at https://malegislature.gov/Laws/GeneralLaws . Type in the chapter and section (or do a keyword search) and it will take you to the law. In most cases, if the law changed as of January 1, 2017, you will be able to see the law up until Jan. 1 and also the change.

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