Bills spur debate on filters in Florida

Topic: has this Story on the bill introduced Monday would require public libraries in Florida to install software filters on at least half of their computers that have Internet access.

More and more children are accessing pornography on the Internet,\" Campbell said. \"More and more sexual predators are using libraries to access our children.\"
[Sen. Skip Campbell, D-Tamarac]
Opponents to mandated filters say statewide restrictions raise serious free speech questions and violate local standard thresholds historically used to address the issue of pornography. The long-standing philosophy argues that local residents and officials are best qualified to determine what is acceptable material within their communities.

\"We\"ve chosen to filter some of our computers, but that has been a local decision,\" said Susan Kilmer, library director for St. Lucie County. \"To mandate a certain percentage is overstepping the concept of local control.\"

St. Lucie County\'s library system does not have filtering devices on any of its 25 to 30 Internet-connected computers, Kilmer said. However, Internet computers now on order for the library system\'s youth services areas will be equipped with filters.

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