State Coastal Expert Looking For Support In Tomorrow's Oil Spill Report

New Orleans, La. – Garret Graves says the commission's report due next Tuesday should outline ways to step up oil and gas operations he says are vital to the national economy.

"We'd like to see the commission coming out and recommending that we quickly move forward on lifting - fully lifting this moratorium, whether it's an official or unofficial moratorium on deepwater and shallow-water oil and gas production."

Graves presided at a meeting of the state Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority at the University of New Orleans. He says the report should also set structure for responding to accidents.

"Better integration of the parishes and the folks that know the geography, know the landscape - know the tides, the currents in their areas and early integrating them into the response process and making them a player like you see in other response type of activities."

Graves says it's vital that the Gulf states receive most of the Clean Water Act fines that will be paid by BP for restoring the ecosystem. The oil spill panel will meet in New Orleans next week to discuss its findings.
For WWNO, I'm Eileen Fleming.