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Questions about how felons' voting rights will be restored

Posted at 5:34 PM, Dec 31, 2018

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — Next week, 1.5 million people in the state of Florida will be able to register to vote after an amendment restoring voting rights to felons passed in November.

But there are some questions on how it will be implemented.

"I can honestly say I would help anyone who wants to turn their life around," Anthony Rayhoskins said, who knows a lot about second chances. "The transitional part of the Lord's Place we try to get them back to working in the garden and staying focused and doing something that's going to benefit them."

At the Lord's Place, he's in charge of the re-entry program, which helps ex-offenders transition back into society. Rayhoskins has been on both sides.

"I've been getting incarcerated since I was nine years old," Rayhoskins told WPTV.

After years of hard work and second chances, he now has a steady job and is a productive member of society.

But up until now he wasn't able to vote.

The recently passed Amendment Four will give him and other felons who weren't convicted of murder or sexual crime and have served the full terms of their sentence the right to vote.

"Because now you give an extra offender the rights to be able to respond to the laws that's actually going to benefit them," Rayhoskins said.

Susan Bucher, the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections, said the process to register won't change.

"We've always been on an honor system where somebody fills out an application we send it to the state and it's totally up to the division of elections whether they send it back and it's approved," Bucher said.

Bucher added that recently she's noticed the state is making changes.

"The state is starting to allow individuals who will get their rights back on January 8th to go ahead and register to vote now," Bucher said.