Felony theft threshold legislation watered down by Senate

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (CAPITOL NEWS SERVICE) - A comprehensive criminal justice reform bill got unanimous approval from a Senate committee Thursday morning but was slightly watered down.

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A provision in the bill would have raised Florida’s felony theft threshold from $300 to $1500. It was reduced to $750.

Senator Jeff Brandes, who has been the driving force behind the proposal, says it was a compromise that had to be made.

“So my goal is that we will move beyond this issue and take on some of the really hard issues of the legislative process,” said Brandes. "How do we move a prison population from 96,000 to something more manageable? How do I adequately fund prison systems? How do I put more educators in the prison systems?”

Florida currently has the second lowest felony theft threshold in the country. Raising it to $750 would bring the state closer in line with the rest of the nation.