Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 051088
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File Number: 051088 File Type: Resolution Status: Adopted
Version: 0 Reference: R-522-05 Control: County Commission
File Name: RESTORE VOTING RIGHTS FOR FELONS Introduced: 4/14/2005
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action: 5/3/2005
Agenda Date: 5/3/2005 Agenda Item Number: 11A1
Notes: Title: RESOLUTION REQUESTING FLORIDA LEGISLATURE TO PLACE A CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT ON THE BALLOT TO GRANT THE RIGHT TO VOTE TO FORMER FELONS WHO HAVE COMPLETED THEIR SENTENCES AND WHO WOULD OTHERWISE BE ELIGIBLE TO VOTE UNDER THE LAWS OF THE STATE OF FLORIDA; DIRECTING THE CLERK OF THE BOARD TO SEND CERTIFIED COPIES OF THIS RESOLUTION TO THE GOVERNOR, CABINET, AND MEMBERS OF THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE [SEE ORIGINAL ITEM UNDER FILE NOS. 050925 AND 051052]
Indexes: VOTING
Sponsors: Katy Sorenson, Prime Sponsor
  Dr. Barbara Carey-Shuler, Co-Sponsor
  Sally A. Heyman, Co-Sponsor
  Barbara J. Jordan, Co-Sponsor
  Dorrin D. Rolle, Co-Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 5/3/2005 11A1 Adopted P

Board of County Commissioners 4/19/2005 14A7 4 Day Rule Invoked
REPORT: Commissioner Barreiro requested the foregoing proposed resolution be four-day ruled.

Community Outreach, Safety & Healthcare Admin Cmte 4/13/2005 2A SUB. AMENDED Forwarded to BCC with a favorable recommendation with committee amendment(s) 4/19/2005 P
REPORT: First Assistant County Attorney Greenberg reviewed the history of the foregoing proposed resolution, noting that it was being presented as a resolution due to the pending legislation at the State level. Commissioner Rolle commented that the business community should be educated to provide employment opportunities to ex-felons in order to reduce the recidivism rate in Miami-Dade County. Commissioner Rolle asked to be added as a co-sponsor. Commissioner Barreiro advised that, although he understood the necessity to institute a process to reinstate the constitutional rights of ex-felons, he could not support a constitutional amendment that would provide blanket approval to all ex-felons due to the seriousness of certain crimes. Commissioner Jordan directed the County Attorney’s Office to draft an ordinance, under her sponsorship, to reinstate the right to vote to former felons, who had completed their sentences and who would otherwise be eligible to vote under state law. Commissioner Sorenson noted that she would work in conjunction with Commissioner Jordan and the County Attorney’s Office on drafting the proposed ordinance. Chairwoman Sosa amended the foregoing proposed resolution to include language directing the County’s state lobbyists to support Senate Bill 1190 and advocate for the introduction in the Florida House of Representatives for a companion bill to Senate Bill 1990 addressing implementation measures. The foregoing resolution would be scheduled for the Board of County Commissioners' meeting of April 19, 2005, as requested by Commissioner Sorenson.

Legislative Text


TITLE
RESOLUTION REQUESTING FLORIDA LEGISLATURE TO PLACE A CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT ON THE BALLOT TO GRANT THE RIGHT TO VOTE TO FORMER FELONS WHO HAVE COMPLETED THEIR SENTENCES AND WHO WOULD OTHERWISE BE ELIGIBLE TO VOTE UNDER THE LAWS OF THE STATE OF FLORIDA; DIRECTING THE CLERK OF THE BOARD TO SEND CERTIFIED COPIES OF THIS RESOLUTION TO THE GOVERNOR, CABINET, AND MEMBERS OF THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE

BODY
WHEREAS, persons convicted as felons who have not had their civil rights restored are ineligible to vote under the laws of the State of Florida; and
WHEREAS, the State of Florida's disenfranchisement of felons has a disparate impact on African Americans and Hispanics; and
WHEREAS, currently pending in the Florida Legislature is Senate Bill 1190, which would allow voters to decide on a constitutional amendment that would automatically restore ex-felons' voting rights; and
WHEREAS, this Board believes that persons who have been convicted of felonies but have completed their sentences should be permitted to participate in civic activities, including the choosing of their elected representatives,
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA, that:
Section 1. This Board requests the Florida Legislature place a constitutional amendment on the next statewide ballot granting the right to vote to former felons who have completed their sentences and who are otherwise eligible to vote under the laws of the State of Florida.
Section 2. The Clerk of this Board is hereby directed to send a certified copy of this resolution to the Governor, Cabinet, and members of the Florida Legislature.
Section 3. This Board directs the County's state lobbyists to advocate for introduction in the Florida House of Representatives of a companion bill to Senate Bill 1190, and for the passage of the legislation set forth in section 1 above, and directs the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs to include this item in the state legislative package.



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