For Hometown News
PORT ST. LUCIE -- The city of Port St. Lucie's efforts to support Brittany's Law are leading to success as the proposed legislation won unanimous support Thursday in the Florida House of Representatives.
The idea for the law began with Officer Robert Steinkraus, who was one of the Port St. Lucie police detectives who handled the Brittany Carleo case. She was killed in 2006 by a convicted sex offender who had been harassing her. Mr. Steinkraus testified to the Florida Senate and House about the case and proposed law.
Mr. Steinkraus explained his concerns to Ms. Faiella, who introduced him to Rep. Gayle Harrell, who initiated the bill. The House passed HB 7035 by a vote of 119-0 on Thursday, May 2, and it now will be sent to the Governor.
In December, the city council unanimously agreed to add Brittany's Law to the city's legislative agenda, meaning it became a priority for them to seek support of the law at the state level.
Council members have heavily supported the law since its inception three years ago and have been encouraging its passage ever since.
"The terrible tragedy of 17-year-old Brittany Carleo happened in our community, so we felt this issue personally in Port St. Lucie," said Ms. Faiella. "We are very thankful for their overwhelming support of our initiative, and we hope this prevents future tragedies and help gives Brittany's family closure."
Mayor JoAnn M. Faiella has been to Tallahassee personally to explain to lawmakers the importance of the law to the city. Mayor Faiella said she is thankful to her colleagues on the City Council, the Treasure Coast Regional League of Cities and the Treasure Coast Council of Local Governments for their support on this important legislation.
She is planning a proclamation for Brittany's family to help them understand that their loss will be used to help prevent similar tragedies in other families in the future.