An emergency ordinance, which aims to crack down on antisemitic acts, was unanimously approved by Palm Beach County commissioners on Tuesday.
It goes into effect immediately.
Under the new ordinance, anyone who puts an image onto a building, structure or public place without the owner’s permission could face a fine.
This includes any kind of hate speech, graphics, logos or text.
Recently, a similar ordinance was passed in Duval County.
First-time offenders will have to pay $1,000 in fines, but if the person gets caught a second time around, they could be forced to pay between $5,000 to $15,000, depending on the circumstances.
“I know this isn’t going to solve the problem, but this is a tool. More importantly, it’s a message to those people who want to bring their hate to Palm Beach County, that you’re not welcome here. As a human being, you’re welcome, but your hate is not welcome and we are never going to tolerate it as a community,” said Palm Beach County mayor Gregg Weiss.
“We are a very, very small percentage of the population, the only way we can survive is when people come together and say it’s not okay,” said Brian Seymour, Vice Chair, Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County.
Currently, there is no separate hate crime law in Florida.
State lawmakers are considering House Bill 269, which will make certain antisemitic acts a hate crime and a third-degree felony.