Triad, NC -- More than 50 new or updated laws went into effect in North Carolina Tuesday morning. They'll affect whether you can text while you drive, the type of license plate frame you can have on your car and how school districts can use video to catch drivers who pass stopped school buses.
For more information on some of the new laws, including some that might leave you scratching your head, watch clips from Tuesday's WFMY News 2's "Good Morning Show" in the video gallery on the right-hand side of this page.
Here is a snapshot of some of the new or updated laws:
-- No texting while driving (S.L. 2009-135) will make it illegal for anyone driving a car to text message or email while driving on a public street. The law makes it illegal to text or read any e-mail or text message while driving. For WFMY News 2's full report and explanation of the new law, click here to get answers.
-- Nicholas Adkins school bus safety act (S.L. 2009-147) will allow school districts to use cameras on buses to detect and prosecute people who pass a stopped school bus. It will also increase the penalty for killing a person when passing a stopped school bus. Adkins was a Rockingham County student who was hit and killed by a motorist as he loaded onto a school bus in January 2009.
-- License plate frame/state name visible (S.L. 2009-456) will make it illegal to cover the state name, year sticker or months stick on a license plate with a frame.
-- Sex offender can't drive bus with children (S.L. 2009-491) will allow the DMV to not renew a commercial drivers license for someone to drive a school bus if they are a sex offender.
-- Sex offender registry/Liberties with student (S.L. 2009-498) will add a new offense beyond just sex offense with a child.
-- Salvia divinorum unlawful (S.L. 2009-538) will make the plant Salvia Divinorum illegal to manufacture, sale, deliver or possess.
-- Protect our kids/cyber bullying (S.L. 2009-551) will make cyber-bullying a criminal offense with a misdemeanor charge.
-- Solar collectors on residential properties (S.L. 2009-553) will regulate solar collectors at residential properties.
To read the full list of laws taking effect in North Carolina, click here.
In Virginia, smoking will be prohibited in restaurants that are open to the public with a few exceptions.
WFMY News 2