Money Owed By Felons To South Floridians

The 11th US Court of Appeals has ruled as Florida’s Supreme Court had previously, that financial restoration is part of a felon’s debt to society and must be repaid prior to the restoration of voting rights. Over the past two years, I’ve provided updates on what’s actually owed and to whom. The money owed is real just as the victims of these felons are as well. Financial restitution has a direct impact on people. In South Florida, we’re all victims who’re owed restitution.

According to government records here’s how much money South Florida governments were owed by felons who’ve yet to pay their court-ordered restitution entering 2020.

  • Broward: $534 million
  • Miami-Dade: $278 million
  • Palm Beach: $196 million

That’s more than $1 billion owed to residents of South Florida. Statewide a total of $4 billion is owed by approximately 774,000 former felons. Keep in mind this doesn’t account for any money owed directly to victims, just the money owed to local governments. There are 2,539,000 households in the TriCounty. That means the average South Florida household is owed $397 by former felons.

Do you think it’s appropriate that you have your $397 back, as previously promised, prior to felons obtaining their right to vote? I do. Now that money will have to be paid back, at least prior to felons being able to vote. As the late Great Paul Harvey would have said, "that’s the rest of the story."

Photo by: RHONA WISE/AFP via Getty Images

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