New DC laws going into effect on Jan. 1 from minimum wage to scooters

The new year means new laws going into effect in D.C. Here's what you need to know starting Jan. 1 in the District.

Living Wage

The living wage in D.C. will increase to $16.50 on Jan. 1, 2023. On July 1, 2023, the District’s minimum wage will increase to $17, trigging an increase to the living wage for non-tipped workers to the same rate. 

READ MORE: Initiative 82 passes: DC tipped workers to be paid minimum wage

Coverage for Medically Necessary Foods

Any health benefits plan issued after Dec. 31, 2022 must provide coverage for the cost of medically necessary food ordered as necessary by a provider for a number of diseases or conditions. View a complete list of the diseases or conditions that qualify here.

Paid Family Leave

Paid Family Leave will be available to District government workers for up to 12 weeks per year for family or parental leave, an increase of 4 weeks.

District government employees will also now receive paid personal medical leave and pre-natal leave for the first time.

Employees will be allowed leave for more than one qualifying event per year, within the maximum total weeks allowable.

READ MORE: Paid family leave policy expands for some DC workers

Battery Recycling Programs

In 2022, battery producers were required to safely recycle batteries, and as of Aug. 1, 2023, consumers will only be able to dispose of primary or rechargeable batteries in the District through battery recycling programs or other approved means.

Approved battery stewardship organizations must submit plans to the Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) by Jan. 1, 2023.

DOEE continues to work with Call2Recycle, the District’s only such organization, to help consumers get ready for the Aug. 1, 2023 compliance date.

New 311 Service Request for Dockless Vehicles

Enhancements are coming to report complaints about the parking of dockless e-bikes or scooters in the District.

Response tickets will be issued to the shared mobility operators, who are required to remediate illegally parked dockless vehicles within two hours.

The statute requires that by Jan. 1, 2023, the dockless vehicle company shall also provide, on each shared fleet device, information on how to report an illegally parked device to the District’s 311 Call Center and DDOT is updating its permits to reflect this requirement.

Zero Commercial Food Waste Requirements

Commercial food waste requirements will extend to certain retail food stores and some colleges and universities based on size.

These entities must now abide by six key food waste requirements such as ensuring proper storage for food waste on-site, including a container with a secure lid.

To view a list of food waste requirements and other information visit here.

Parking Cash Out Law Requirement

The Parking Cashout Law requires District employers with 20 or more covered employees that offer a parking benefit, free or subsidized parking, to their employees to either offer a Clean Air Fringe Benefit to employees receiving the parking benefit, develop a transportation demand management plan or pay a Clean Air Compliance fee.

All employers with 20 or more covered employees in the District, regardless of whether they offer a parking benefit, must report to the DDOT with details of how they comply or their basis for being exempt from the requirements by Jan. 15, 2023.

This Law was enacted in 2020 as an amendment to the Sustainable DC Omnibus Amendment Act of 2014 and the first reports are due by Jan. 15, 2023.

More information can be found here.