Grady proposes bills that would focus special session on economy, cleanup

— Rep. Tom Grady aims to eliminate corporate income tax, a state worker health insurance subsidy and limitations on claims against oil companies with a packet of legislation he will file during the special session, a release from his office said.

Grady, R-Naples, said the special session called by Gov. Charlie Crist to discuss a constitutional ban on oil drilling in state waters is not a time to debate banning “something that is already illegal.”

“It’s time we move forward and focus on what’s important, clean up and jobs,” Grady said.

A state law that bans drilling can be overturned by a vote of the Legislature. House leaders, including Grady, voted in 2009 to allow drilling 3 miles off the coast before the Senate killed the bill.

Eliminating the state’s corporate income tax, will spur hiring and rejuvenate the economy, Grady said.

The second of the two bills would eliminate a health insurance subsidy given to retired state workers, amounting to about $105 a month, the release said.

“If cuts are not made to programs such as this optional subsidy, we will have to cut mandatory programs like education, medicare or medicaid,” Grady said.

A third bill would eliminate restrictions on how much the state can recover from polluters, the release said.

“We must remove the caps on damages to better reflect the realities of what our state will lose from the damage caused by oil,” Grady said. “This packet of legislation deals with everything this special session should be focused on — cleaning up and getting our economy back on track.”

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