FORT MYERS, FL-- The City of Fort Myers is reinforcing restrictions for sexual offenders within city limits after council members approved a plan that would forbid sex offenders from being near children.
After considering the measure for about a month, city council members unanimously voted in favor of the new ordinance that will place even more restrictions on where registered sex offenders and predators can go.
The ordinance prohibits sex offenders of coming within 300 feet of safe zones which include locations like schools, bus stops, YMCA's and daycare's. According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement website, there are 127 registered sex offenders and predators in Fort Myers.
This new ordinance mimics the ordinance Lee County adopted nearly a year and a half ago.
Fort Myers Police Chief Doug Baker says its a way to better protect our children.
"At the end of the day it is about the safety and security of our children, providing a safe environment for them to play and interact with other kids," said Baker.
"I think it is warranted, I think it keeps our city aligned with a broader rule of law with regard to what the county has done and I think it should ultimately provide protection in the ways that it is intended to," said Fort Myers Mayor Randall Henderson.
tHE ordinance still allows the offender to drop off and pick up their children from school. they are also allowed to attend school and church functions with children around if they notify the right people, but if they are within 300 feet of a safe zone they could be fined up to 500 dollars and spend up to 60 days in jail.