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Bill would require Florida sex offenders to use special-colored license plates

  • 28 Apr 2023 8:27 AM
    Message # 13183921
    John (Administrator)

    Florida State Senator Lauren Book Proposes Special Fluorescent Green License Plates for Spouses and Children of Persons Required to Register as Sex Offenders

    BOYNTON BEACH, Fla., April 26, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- In what civil rights groups are calling both a shocking and heinous move, Florida State Senator Lauren Book, long known for the extreme legislation she has supported against the families of persons required to register as sexual offenders, has proposed an amendment that would require special fluorescent green license plates not only for the registrants themselves, but for their spouses and children as well. Book recently proposed an amendment to Senate Bill 1252 that would require all vehicles owned, leased, or operated by persons required to register as sexual offenders to have their current license plates removed and replaced by "a distinctive, fluorescent green license plate."

    According to Gail Colletta, President of the Florida Action Committee, such a policy would gravely threaten the safety and property not only of persons required to register as sexual offenders, but also their family members and in some cases roommates, extended family, or even friends. "As Senator Book well knows, the Florida Statutes define a vehicle owned by a person required to register as a sex offender not only as their own car, but as any vehicle parked at the registrant's home for five days or more. This obviously includes the registrant's spouse and children, but in many cases also includes roommates, extended family, and friends visiting for a week. Book's amendment to SB 1252 should shock and terrify every citizen in the state of Florida," Colletta said.

    When asked why Book, a South Florida Democrat who describes herself as "an educator and public servant working to make life better for all Floridians" would propose such a dangerous and unconstitutional law, Colletta pointed out that Book has a history of proposing extreme legislation targeting those who have committed even relatively minor sexual offenses, along with their families. Colletta noted that "Lauren Book apparently is oblivious to, or just doesn't care, that her fluorescent green license plate amendment would put registrants and their families at extreme risk of not only harassment but physical violence. I'm sure Book would say that registrants should have thought of that before they committed their offenses, but how could they have possibly contemplated such a law in some cases decades before the fact? And what about their families? What did their child do to deserve a special fluorescent license plate forced on her car by the state? When it comes to piling on additional punishment long after registrants have completed their sentences, the Legislature just can't seem to help itself."

    The Florida Action Committee (FAC), a non-profit organization dedicated to protecting the public through the passage of rational laws based on empirical evidence, has urged other state senators to vote against Book's dangerous anti-family amendment. An official spokesperson for the Florida Action Committee confirmed that if Book's amendment eventually passes, it will immediately be challenged in court.

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