Crist calls for special session to focus on the future of oil drilling off Florida's coast

In addition, the Tampa Tribune reports that:

Crist also announced the formation of a gulf oil spill economic recovery task force this morning. That group, he said, will help focus on lost revenues from the continued spill threat.

The task force will include representatives from state agencies, county governments, the seafood industry, tourism and other interests, the governor said. The group will make sure that BP LLC, the company responsible for the spill, is providing financial relief to those affected by the spill; members will also make sure the state has an adequate marketing plan so that tourism will not suffer.

The Governor also said that that the state"may have a couple" special sessions, including one dealing with ethics and anti-corruption legislation that didn't pass this spring.  That plays into rumors some Crist allies have been spreading, that governor would "get back" at some of his fellow Republicans who disrespected him during the past legislative session (lawmakers cannot fund raise while they are in session in Tallahassee.

Governor Charlie Crist this morning said he wants to call for a special session of the Legislature within the next few weeks that would focus on a constitutional amendment that would ban offshore drilling in Florida waters, as well as looking at energy alternatives.

Crist's announcement comes five days after Miami Beach State Senator Dan Gelber, and House Representatives Keith Fitzgerald from Sarasota and Rick Kriseman from St. Petersburg - all Democrats- held news conferences calling for the governor to bring the Legislature together for a special session to then call for a constitutional amendment banning offshore drilling state waters before the voters this November (a spokeswoman with the state's Division of Elections told CL last week that lawmakers would have until the end of July to do so to get the measure on the ballot).

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