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Environment

Feinberg slammed by Congress over oil spill claims

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Ken Feinberg

By James Call

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wfsu/local-wfsu-991617.mp3

Tallahassee, FL – The BP Claims administrator got an earful from Congress Thursday. Gulf Coast members told Ken Feinberg people who fish for shrimp say they aren't getting compensated for what they lost in last year's oil spill. James Call reports Kenneth Feinberg says new rules are in the works to make more generous payouts.

Kenneth Feinberg told the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources he hopes to announce the rules within two weeks. He agreed with concerns from shrimpers that the length and extent of damage they suffered has been more significant than first thought. Feinberg said, we've got to do better for the shrimpers.

Eighteen months after the spill, a $20 billion compensation fund set up by BP has paid $5.5 billion to 213,000 claimants. More than 300,000 other claimants have been denied compensation. An Associated Press review published in February described a process beset by red tape and delay and led by an administrator whose ties to BP raises questions about his independence. In response to the criticism, Feinberg agreed in July to a Justice Department audit of the fund. It is expected to start by the end of the year.