Louisiana Lawmakers React To Announcement Of BP Settlement
U.S. authorities have reached an $18.7 billion agreement with BP on the settlement of the 2010 Gulf oil spill. Louisiana is set to receive $6.8 billion for natural resource damages, Clean Water Act civil penalties, and state economic damages, and will be paid over the next 16 years.
Below is reaction from various elected officials here in Louisiana:
“Five years ago my administration committed to holding BP accountable for the Deepwater Horizon disaster," said Governor Bobby Jindal. "Today, through extensive coordination with the Attorney General’s office and the State’s coastal authorities, we’ve made good on that promise. This Agreement will not only restore the damage inflicted on our coastal resources by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, it will also allow Louisiana to continue aggressively fighting coastal erosion. These funds will allow us to build on the momentum gained through the State’s increased investment in coastal protection and restoration since 2008. We appreciate the hard work of everyone who worked to construct this historic settlement, including General Caldwell, our Louisiana legal team and trustees, the governors and attorneys general of the other Gulf states, the federal trustees, and the representatives of the court who worked tirelessly to assure the fair and orderly administration of justice under such extreme circumstances.”
"This agreement is the result of five years of hard-fought litigation and intense scientific research, and it provides Louisiana the coastal restoration and compensation it needs following the Deepwater Horizon disaster," says Attorney General Buddy Caldwell. "With a total recovery of more than $10 billion – which is more than any state has ever recovered for this type of case – we can begin work to restore and repair Louisiana and its coastline. This agreement lets us focus right away on improving the state without further litigation delays and appeals that could take years. I am extremely pleased by the work done by the Court and all the parties in this matter to reach an agreement that will bring great and historic benefits to Louisiana and the Gulf.”
“Five years ago, the BP explosion and spill took the lives of 11 men and devastated our coast, our communities, and our economy,” U.S. Senator David Vitter said. “Properly holding BP accountable and making sure that these monies go toward restoring our coast have been top priorities, and moving forward I'll make sure we put shovels in the ground soon using this money wisely according to the detailed plan I've laid out.”
“The 2010 BP oil spill was the largest environmental disaster in American history, impacting the lives of nearly every individual on our Gulf Coast," points out Congressman Charles Boustany. "Finally, after five years of litigation and a nightmare for so many Louisianans living and working on our coast, this settlement allows us to turn the page. I will work with the Louisiana delegation as well as our state and local officials to ensure that these funds will be used for their intended purpose: rebuilding our coast and revitalizing the Gulf.”
"Today’s settlement is great news for Louisiana, her taxpayers, and the people who have been working hard to restore our coast," says former Congressman and current Attorney General candidate Jeff Landry. "The settlement finally puts an end to one case of Buddy Caldwell robbing our state to pay his campaign contributors. Since we lost 11 lives in the Deepwater Horizon tragedy, Caldwell has bilked Louisiana taxpayers of over $13 million to reward donors of his campaign – millions on legal fees that could have been used to restore our coast. While our coastal restoration efforts will fortunately get much-needed funding, it is disheartening to think how much more our state could have dedicated to the cause had Caldwell not wasted so much taxpayer money on exorbitantly-priced, outside attorneys."