Fla. Gov. Scott Won't Sue Transocean Over BP Gulf Spill

Wednesday, 20 Apr 2011 01:28 PM

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Gov. Rick Scott, a Republican who favors tort reform limiting businesses' exposure to frivolous lawsuits, Tuesday decided against suing the owner of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig involved in last year’s Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

Scott and Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, also a Republican, decided not to join other governments in a federal lawsuit filed in Louisiana to recoup damage from Transocean, the company that owned the BP-operated rig, the Bradenton Herald-Tribune reported Wednesday.

However, that move, prompted by a deadline to join the lawsuit, would not preclude the Sunshine State from recouping money lost as a result of the disaster. Florida will continue to seek reimbursement by filing a claim through the process set up by the federal government.

"It doesn't make sense for the state to join that lawsuit," Scott said. "We have a plan to make sure our state is treated fairly with regard to getting reimbursed by British Petroleum for the damages to our state."

Bondi said right now it makes more sense for the state to work with BP, and that the state could sue later.

"The Transocean deadline does not affect us, nor will it affect us if we eventually choose to enter litigation,” Bondi said. "Right now, we're attempting to reach a settlement."

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