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Lawmakers agree to workshop bills for texting while driving ban

A three-year effort to get a texting while driving ban is gaining momentum. Supporters suggest it could pass this year, though optimism in the weeks before session is rampant.

Lawmakers introduced 17 bills on the topic this year. At least 35 representatives and senators are sponsors or co-sponsors — or more than 20 percent of the Legislature. And a few months ago, Gov. Charlie Crist announced his support. "Florida is ready to say we are no longer going to tolerate this irresponsible activity," said state Rep. Doug Holder, R-Sarasota, one of the early proponents who saw his legislation collect dust for the previous two years. "This year is a different year."

All this led to a breakthrough Tuesday: the promise of a House workshop on the various bills, scheduled for next week. Read more here.