A slew of new laws will go into effect on Jan. 1.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, a Washington based group that tracks lawmaking, an estimated 40,000 new laws, regulations and resolutions were approved by state legislatures in 2013, with a large amount of them taking effect as the the new year is brought in. Some of those that will take effect in the state of Texas include:
-- Consumers ordering mixed drinks in restaurants will pay a sales tax of 8.25 percent. Currently those drinks are untaxed. Restaurants will also see a decrease in the mixed beverage tax from 14 percent down to 6.7 percent.
-- Landlords of apartment complexes will be required to give written notice to tenants and to the city of a pending disconnection of utility service because of a landlord's nonpayment of a bill. This is aimed to protect tenants whose utility bills are included in their monthly rent.
-- The Texas DPS will be prohibited from requesting or requiring an applicant's social security number when obtaining or renewing a concealed handgun license.
-- After multiple scandals in the prepaid funeral industry, lawmakers have passed a bill that gives the Texas Department of Banking regulators strong weapons to fight fraud in a huge industry. Under the new law, when a funeral provider named in a contract closes, a purchaser of a contract must be notified. The law will also tighten the financial requirements of companies that sell those contracts to weed out weaker companies that don't have strong financial backing.
In comparison, Texas' new laws can appear somewhat tame compared to others that will go into effect in other states.
In Illinois, a new law will ban anyone under the age of 18 from using a tanning salon. Illinois will be the sixth state to prohibit teens from using the beds and hopes to reduce the risk of skin cancer.
In California students will be allowed to play school sports and use school bathrooms "consistent with their gender identity," regardless of their birth identity.
In Colorado adults 21 and older will be able to purchase up to an ounce of marijuana for recreational use from a state-licensed retail store.
In Washington state regulators are going through more than 2,000 applications for similar stores after voters approved a similar law in 2012.
The first stores are expected to open in Washington within a few months.