New laws 2020: Los Angeles street vendors now regulated, must pay fees

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- From rent control to minimum wage increases to limits on street vendors, a host of new laws are taking effect in California and locally in Los Angeles.

LA is trying to get a handle on the thousands of street vendors who operate all across the city. A new state law that took effect last year prevents cities from banning street vendors altogether, but requires communities to develop policies to regulate where and how they can operate.

Now in Los Angeles, vendors will need to buy a permit to sell their goods on the street.

During the first six months of the new law, the permits will cost $291. After July 1, the cost goes up to $541. After that, vendors who operate without a permit will face fines.

RELATED: Other new laws taking effect in California in 2020

Among other new laws that took effect on Jan. 1:

Freelance workers:

The California gig economy is getting a shakeup with Assembly Bill 5.

AB5 makes it harder for companies to treat workers as freelancers and easier for employees to qualify for benefits.

That means gig workers, like rideshare drivers and freelance journalists, will be eligible for minimum wage, health insurance and paid sick days.

But not all gig workers like the change, saying it may reduce their freedom to choose when and how often they work.

"The main benefit I get from driving rideshare is I command my own schedule, I decide when I'm gonna work," said rideshare driver Jack Kinney.

A federal judge has issued a temporary restraining order exempting truck drivers from the new rules.

Some gig economy companies like Uber and Postmates are suing to block the law.

Minimum wage:

The minimum wage across California is now going up.

Companies with more than 25 workers now have to pay at least $13 an hour.

Businesses with fewer employees now have to pay $12 an hour.

Health insurance:

Another new law requires all Californians to have health insurance.

You may have missed the previous deadlines to enroll for insurance, but you can still apply for the Covered California health plan until Jan. 31.

If you aren't signed up by that point, the state will tax you and that could total over $2,000 for a family of four.

Also, another new law will make it harder for parents to get around the state's vaccination requirements for school children.

Solar power:

If you're planning to build a new house -- get ready to go solar.

California is the first state to require new homes to sport solar panels.

The California Energy Commission estimates the law will add another $9,500 onto the cost of a new house.

Other new laws:

California now bans the sale of cosmetic products if they were tested on animals.

Smoking is banned in all California state parks and beaches unless you're in a parking lot.

A new law protects workers from discrimination based on their hairstyles.

California renters may see some relief. Most annual rent increases will be capped at 5 percent plus inflation.

Animal shelters across the state must disclose a dog's biting history.
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