Atwater points finger at Crist and Cretul
Senate President Jeff Atwater said he tried to persuade both Gov. Charlie Crist and House Speaker Larry Cretul to expand the purpose of this week’s special session beyond just the drilling ban, including a discussion on tax relief, the designation of a lead agency to work with other states and the creation of a Florida claims advocate.
"Unfortunately, I did not receive a receptive audience," he said, adding, "The Governor and the House have simply provided no latitude to expand our business beyond the purpose of the call."
The Senate convened at 12:43 p.m., long after it was clear that the House would not take up the ballot measure.
Atwater urged members to attend a committee meeting on the oil spill scheduled for later that day and warned that they might have to return for another special session soon.
"It is quite likely that we will find ourselves here again in the near future," he said.
Atwater said the Gulf of Mexico oil spill threatened hundreds of small businesses.