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Lawmakers propose texting and 'foreign law' bans for 2013

Published Nov. 20, 2012

Florida lawmakers have filed their first bills of the session.

Several are familiar: A ban on texting while driving, a requirement that parasailing operators carry insurance and a 'foreign law' bill criticized by opponents as anti-Islamic.

Sen. Nancy Detert, R-Venice, who sponsored anti-texting while driving bills for the past two sessions says she has renewed hope for the year.

Last year the measure died after House Speaker Dean Cannon, R-Winter Park, kept it from being heard in committee, Detert said.

"I'm about to drive home five hours, and I'll probably see someone on the road swerving," said Detert, who was in Tallahassee for the organization session that ran Monday and Tuesday. "I'll look over and see the person texting, looking down and not paying attention to the road."

Under the bill, drivers could be fined $30 for texting only if they're stopped for another violation. Detert pitched the measure as "common sense" middle ground.

Some people don't like any new laws while others think the state should ban all cell phone use while driving.

"That's why we should put it before members and let them vote on it," she said.

Of the 26 bills that have been filed, 19 are claims bills.