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Consumer Taxes, Expanded Health Coverage Among Connecticut's New Laws

Bizuayehu Tesfaye/AP Images for College of American Pathologists/See, Test and Treat

New laws that take effect in Connecticut on January 1 include a tax break for businesses, new taxes for consumers, more time for driver’s license renewals and expanded coverage for some healthcare service.

The tax break for businesses has to do with the elimination of the $250 business entity tax collected every two years from all companies doing businesses in Connecticut.

Consumers, however, will face new taxes. The state’s 6.35% sales tax has been expanded to include parking, dry cleaning and laundry, interior design and safety apparel. Officials estimate the new taxes will bring in about $25 million the first year.

Motorists can expect fewer trips to the DMV. Driver’s license renewals have been extended to every eight years instead of six. And vehicle registration renewals have been extended to every three years instead of two.

A new healthcare law requires health insurance policies expand coverage for breast ultrasound screening to include all women over 40, regardless of whether or not they have a family history of breast cancer. 

Another law requires health insurance to cover hearing aid replacements every two years, regardless of cost. Previous law had limited hearing aid coverage to $1,000 within a 24-month period. 

There is also a new certification requirement for community health workers. The certification has to be renewed every three years. It includes a $100 fee and at least 1,000 hours of experience. 

As WSHU Public Radio’s award-winning senior political reporter, Ebong Udoma draws on his extensive tenure to delve deep into state politics during a major election year.