YES on Amendment 9, 'Small Gesture' for Struggling Families of Fallen Local Heroes
Around the State
The names of these heroes are engraved on the marble walls of the Law Enforcement Memorial in the courtyard of Florida’s Capitol in Tallahassee to forever remind us of our pledge to “never forget” these brave men and women.
Our state has the unwelcome distinction of frequently leading the nation in the number of fallen officers who have given their lives for their community. Already in 2012 we have lost five officers in our state. Every one of these tragedies has affected the lives of the officer’s family, friends and co-workers. Each time this happens, the communities they serve and their law enforcement agencies lose a valued member.
But more so, these officers leave behind a family that must now face an uncertain future. Their loved one is gone. The survivors, spouses and children must move forward. They live with photographs and memories of their officer. The daily burden of providing for the family can be difficult with the breadwinner taken from them.
Rep. Shawn Harrison introduced a bill to assist these families. It passed the Florida House and Senate and now appears on the November ballot as Amendment 9. This amendment will help these families and children by providing them a property tax exemption. In the overall scheme of things, it's a small gesture from a grateful state -- but it nevertheless is a huge relief to a family that has given so much.
The Fraternal Order of Police supports Amendment 9 and strongly urges all Floridians to vote in favor of this amendment in November.
James W. Preston is president of the Florida State Lodge, Fraternal Order of Police.