RFRA Passes in Florida
Article ID: 2156
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 7,777
Times Read: 12,545
Posted: June 29th. 1998
Times Viewed: 12,545
RFRA Intro: Since the Supreme Court struck down the Religious Freedom Restoration Act last June, many states have introduced "mini-RFRA" legislation. Most bills are still pending-ask your legislators where YOUR state RFRA is!- but some states have pushed forward and enacted their versions of RFRA, notably Connecticut, Rhode Island and Florida.
The Witches' Voice has posted the state RFRAs which are currently law and will update the list as more states pass this legislation.
If you know the current status of your state's RFRA legislation, please pass the information along to us and we will add it to this section.
Florida House of Representatives - 1998-HB 3201 -Passed into law 6/19/98
An act relating to religious freedom; creating the "Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1998"; providing that government shall not substantially burden the exercise of religion; providing exceptions; providing definitions; providing for attorney's fees and costs; providing applicability; providing construction; providing an effective date.
Section 1. Short title.--This act may be cited as the"Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1998." HOUSE SUMMARY: Creates the "Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1998." Defines terms for purposes of the act. Provides that government may not substantially burden a person's exercise of religion, or the exercise of religion of a person incarcerated within a correctional facility within the state, even if the burden results from a rule of general applicability. Provides an exception in which government may substantially burden such persons' exercise of religion only if it demonstrates that the application of the burden to the person is in furtherance of a compelling governmental interest, or a substantial penological interest, and is the least restrictive means of furthering the compelling governmental interest or substantial penological interest. Provides for attorney's fees and costs. Provides applicability. Provides construction.
Section 2. Definitions.--As used in this act:
(1) "Government" or "state" includes any branch, department, agency, instrumentality, or official or other person acting under color of law of the state, a county, special district, municipality, or any other subdivision of the state.
(2) "Demonstrates" means to meet the burden of going forward with the evidence and of persuasion.
(3) "Exercise of religion" means the exercise of religion under s. 3, Art. I of the State Constitution.
(4) "Incarcerated" means confined within any correctional facility in the state.
Section 3. Free exercise of religion protected.
(1) The government shall not substantially burden a person's exercise of religion, even if the burden results froma rule of general applicability, except that government may substantially burden a person's exercise of religion only if it demonstrates that application of the burden to the person: (a) Is in furtherance of a compelling governmental interest; and (b) Is the least restrictive means of furthering that compelling governmental interest.
(2) The government shall not substantially burden an incarcerated person's exercise of religion, even if the burden results from a rule of general applicability, except that government may substantially burden an incarcerated person's exercise of religion only if the burden: (a) Is in furtherance of a substantial penological interest; and (b) Is the least restrictive means of furthering that substantial penological interest.
(3) A person whose religious exercise has been burdened in violation of this section may assert that violation as a claim or defense in a judicial proceeding and obtain appropriate relief.
Section 4. Attorney's fees and costs.--The prevailing party in any action or proceeding to enforce a provision of this act is entitled to reasonable attorney's fees and costs to be paid by the government.
Section 5. Applicability; construction.
(1) This act applies to all state law, and the implementation of that law, whether statutory or otherwise, and whether adopted before or after the enactment of this act.
(2) State law adopted after the date of the enactment of this act is subject to this act unless such law explicitly excludes such application by reference to this act.
(3) Nothing in this act shall be construed to authorize the government to burden any religious belief.
(4) Nothing in this act shall be construed to circumvent the provisions of chapter 893, Florida Statutes.
(5) Nothing in this act shall be construed to affect, interpret, or in any way address that portion of s. 3, Art. I of the State Constitution prohibiting laws respecting the establishment of religion.
(6) Nothing in this act shall create any rights by an employee against an employer if the employer is not a governmental agency.
Section 6. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law. (Effect took place 6/19/98)
Status of other state RFRA legislation:
CALIFORNIA: -MEASURE-A.B. No. 1617
AUTHOR(S)-Baca (Principal Coauthor: Scott) (Coauthors: Aguiar, Baldwin, Bowler, Cunneen, Havice, Hertzberg, House, Kuykendall, Leach, McClintock, Villaraigosa, andWashington) (Coauthors: Senators Brulte, Lewis, and Watson).
TOPIC-Religious Freedom Protection Act. HOUSE LOCATION-SEN LAST AMENDED DATE-06/22/98
LAST HIST. ACT. DATE:-06/24/98 LAST HIST. ACTION-In committee: Hearing postponed by committee. COMM. LOCATION-SEN JUDICIARY HEARING DATE-06/30/98
TITLE-An act to add Section 43.2 to the Civil Code, and to add Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 6400) to Division 7 of Title 1 of the Government Code, relating to religious freedom.
AUTHOR(S)-Cohen (HB3051 by Burchett, DeBerry J, Wood, Halteman Harwel, Walker (Rhea).
Religion and Religious Organizations - Prohibits government from substantially burdening person's exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship. -Amends TCA Title 4.
4/13/98, 09:55 AMS - Taken off notice for calendar in S Jud Comm.
Important Note: The Witches' Voice Inc. does not offer legal advice nor are we qualified to do so. This document does not constitute legal advice but is intended to be used in conjunction with the legal services of an attorney licensed to practice in your state. This document can be copied and distributed to your lawyer should you decide that you need the services of one.
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