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Chelsea's Law Leaps Lawmaker Hurdle

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    SACRAMENTO, CA - JANUARY 5: An exterior of the state capitol is shown on January 5, 2006 in Sacramento, California. California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger delivered his state of the state address in the Assembly Chambers of the state capitol today. In his speech, Schwarzenegger admitted to making mistakes with the special election and vowed to work with members of the Assembly and Senate and try to move California ahead in the year to come. (Photo by David Paul Morris/Getty Images)

    A pivotal vote for Chelsea's Law was held at the state capitol on Tuesday.

    The Senate Public Safety Committee unanimously approved an amended version of the bill, which was named after Chelsea King, the 17-year-old Poway senior who was raped and murdered by convicted sex offender John Gardner.

    The bill includes a one strike provision for the most violent sex offenders and lengthier prison terms for forcible sex crimes.

    The measure was authored by local Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher, who issued a news release after the Senate committee approved it on Tuesday.

    "We are incredibly moved by the bipartisan show of support we received today from the Senate Public Safety Committee," Fletcher stated. "The changes taken today make this a landmark and truly comprehensive approach to how our state deals with violent sexual predators. We have also addressed any budget concerns by providing better prioritization on those offenders who pose the greatest risk to society."

    The Kings were also quoted in the statement.

    "Today's outcome is a testament to our daughter's powerful legacy, to the passionate voices of Californians who care about children and to the legislative process which exists to carry out the will of the people," the Kings statement read.

    Chelsea's Law -- now known as Assembly Bill 1844 -- next moves on to the Senate Appropriations Committee for a vote in August.