ATLANTIC BEACH, Fla. -- Atlantic Beach commissioners voted Monday to pass a resolution supporting the Florida Competitive Workforce Act, a statewide bill that would make it illegal for employers to discriminate based on sexual orientation.
The resolution passed 4-1. Only Commissioner Jimmy Hill dissented. The city is the first in Duval County to express support for the legislation.
But not everyone is happy about it. Atlantic Beach resident and founder of Biblical Concepts Ministries, Raymond Johnson, went door-to-door Monday afternoon informing voters about a similar ordinance being discussed for Atlantic Beach.
"We feel the need to let the actual residents here know what's going on," said Johnson.
Commissioner Maria Mark, who requested a vote on the resolution Monday, said the city attorney is looking a human rights ordinances that have passed in other counties.
If it were to pass it would be very similar to what is being proposed statewide.
"It would cause an undue burden on religious organizations and businesses. Create the chaos and create lawsuits," said Johnson.
If the bill gets defeated in Tallahassee, Commissioner Mark said she wants Atlantic Beach to have its own ordinance.
"There's no law protecting the LGBT community, sexual orientation or perceived or otherwise from being discriminated against," said Mark.
According to Mark, she also wants to make sure exemptions are in place to protect religious groups and certain small businesses.
Johnson said the decision should ultimately be left up to the citizens.
"I think it would be best to let the folks hear it and decide the issue," said Johnson.
Mark said the earliest the human rights ordinance would go up for readings is April.