Florida Will Skip Oil Spill Lawsuit Against Rig Owner

April 20, 2011

Gov. Rick Scott and Attorney General Pam Bondi say Florida won’t join a lawsuit against the owner of the Deepwater Horizon rig that exploded a year ago, causing the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

They made the announcement Tuesday while in Panama City for a Cabinet meeting and tour of the Panhandle to mark the spill’s one-year anniversary.

Wednesday is the deadline for joining a federal lawsuit against Transocean in New Orleans. Several of Florida’s local governments are participating.

The state could still sue BP, which had hired Transocean to drill the well.

But Scott reiterated his preference for reaching a settlement with the British oil company. He said avoiding a lawsuit against BP “would be utopia.”

Florida is expected to seek reimbursement for lost taxes and other expenses.

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