A total of 18 new laws go into effect in Minnesota today (WED). The laws were designed to help small businesses, energy companies, the environment, health and human services, public housing, public safety and transportation, and members of the military. One law will help gas station owners recover money from pump drive-offs. Another law creates stiffer penalties for intentional neglect of vulnerable adults or children. Another law makes it a felony to sell synthetic drugs, and expands the list of illicit synthetic substances. For members of a military honor guard, a new law increases their stipends from $35 per-appearance to $50. The governor can now award certain medals to officers and enlisted personnel who served in war or other declared emergencies as well. Parents of deaf children who need mental health treatment will now have more options for where they can seek treatment also, and doctors will be allowed to issue prescriptions electronically in instances where the law had required prescribing through written or oral methods, amongst other new laws.