The Texas attorney general is trying to get some residents of the Lone Star State back to work. He has sued Department of the Interior Secretary Ken Salazar to lift the Obama administration's ban on offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.
Attorney General Greg Abbott says the current offshore drilling moratorium is "unjustified," and he filed suit in a Houston federal court Wednesday.
The suit also charged that federal officials did not coordinate with the state or consider the economic impacts before issuing the moratorium. Texas is one of the nation's most active oil refinery states. State figures show there were 86,900 jobs in oil and natural gas extraction in April and an additional 107,800 in support industries.
The ban began July 12, and has halted all drilling operations in water greater than 500 feet.
A federal judge in Louisiana struck down an earlier ban, but the administration put another one in place.