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Citizens, regional lawmakers, D.C. question administrator's methods, fairness in disbursing $20 billion
President Barack Obama vowed during a White House speech last June that the $20 billion he helped coax out of BP for an oil spill compensation fund would take care of victims "as quickly, as fairly and as transparently as possible."
Eight months later, that's not how things look to many people along the Gulf Coast.
Tens of thousands of fishermen, oyster shuckers, business owners, hotel operators and hairdressers still await payment. Many others whose claims have been tur
So far, nearly 490,000 claims have been filed, and roughly half have been turned down. The fund has handed out $3.4 billion to 169,000 claimants. Nearly all the money dispensed so far has been in the form of either emergency payments for short-term losses or one-time checks handed out in exchange for a promise not to sue.
Feinberg recently said he believes the Gulf of Mexico should largely recover from BP's oil spill by the end of next year, and he doesn't think the entire $20 billion will be needed to compensate victims. Only half of that should suffice, he said.