Rep. Meek wants $100 million from BP to help Florida tourism

Florida Senate candidate Kendrick Meek (D) is demanding BP show his state the money as part of their reparations from the oil spill in the Gulf.

Meek, in a conference call with Florida reporters, said the company should pay more than the $25 million it pledged to spread the word that Florida's beaches have been unharmed by the spill.

Florida is a popular tourist destination, particularly with the summer vacation months looming, and tourist dollars are one of the state's major sources of revenue.

Meek said that BP should kick in at least $100 million, which he argued was only half of the revenue the company generates in a day, according to the Jacksonville Daily Record.

“While I applaud your company’s promise to make $25 million available to promote Florida tourism, it simply is not enough,” Meek wrote in a letter to BP CEO Tony Hayward.

“I am writing to request that you pledge an additional $75 million - the amount of money required by conservative estimates to run an adequate domestic and international marketing campaign. This type of ad campaign will cost at least $8 million a week. Over 12 weeks, it will cost the state at least $100 million.”

The company has not offered a public response to Meek’s request.

Meanwhile, Gov. Charlie Crist, who's running for the Senate as an independent candidate, wants $35 million from BP.

He said the state would spend the money on "an an emergency advertising blitz to calm tourists worried that Florida beaches might become fouled by the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico," according to the St. Petersburg Times.

Crist also wrote to BP, and a company spokesman told the paper that BP was "reviewing Crist's letter and planned to meet with the governor and visit Florida officials."