First BP Witness Testifying in Oil Spill Trial

The trial will determine what additional money BP Oil must pay to claimants, including in Manatee and Sarasota counties.

BP is expected to call its first witness Monday at a trial to determine how much more in damages it must pay from the oil well blowout in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Associated Press is reporting that Halliburton, BP's cement contractor on the Deepwater Horizon drilling project, just rested its case. This next phase of the trial is expected to last six weeks.

U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier is hearing the testimony in a New Orleans coutroom. The trial is to detail reasons for and assign blame in the disaster. The oil giant recently warned investors that settlements will be much higher than originally estimated.

The Sarasota County Commission will set up a process for determining how damages will be spent, according to the Sarasota Herald Tribune. Goverments have a fair amount of flexibility in deciding on how to allocate dollars received.

In Feburary, the Tampa Bay Times detailed the number of legal claims piling up against BP in Florida. So far 34,000 Florida businesses and individuals have been approved to receive a total of $323 million.

  • Sarasota County may receive $5.25 million in damages, according to Sarasota Patch.
  • Damages from the oil spill were estimated in 2012 to bring as much as $19 million to Manatee County, according to the Bradenton Herald.
  • The city of Tampa is seeking $50 million in damages to cover past and future losses.
  • Pinellas County beach communities are seeking $12 million in damages.
  • due to the linger effects of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The grant money will go to the Convention and Visitor's Bureau.

The deadline to file a claim is April 2014, according to the PR Newswire, which reported that "funds established from the BP oil spill settlement are available to businesses in almost every industry ranging from “mom and pop” housekeeping services to a retail stores."

According to a 2012 Sarasota Patch story:

Sarasota County has to use a federal forumla to file claims.

Here's the details of the federal settlement, according to BP:

  • Resolution of all criminal claims with Department of Justice includes $4 billion paid in installments over a period of five years
  • Resolution of all securities claims with Securities and Exchange Commission includes $525 million paid in installments over a period of three years
  • Existing $38.1 billion charge against income to increase by approximately $3.85 billion
  • BP is prepared to vigorously defend itself against remaining civil claims

BP will pay that fine over a period of five years, according to this BP chart:

$525M over 3 years Criminal Fine
$1256M over 5 years NFWF & NAS payments
$2744M over 5 years Total new cash payments
2012  175      175 2013  175  506  420 1101 2014  175  250  345  770 2015    150  380  530 2016    150  590  740 2017    200 1009 1209
Total  525 1256 2744 4525


BP Oil Spill Coverage

BP Oil Spill Settlement: How Much Does Sarasota County Get?

Mote Study: BP Oil Spill Cleaning Chemical Kills Coral

Public Offer Opinions about Post-Spill Gulf Restoration

Regional National Estuary Programs Announce Gulf Ecosystem Plan

2011 Was a Deadly Year for Manatees

Sarasota Residents Join Hands to Protect America's Best Beach

Get the Sarasota Patch newsletter delivered for free in your email each morning.

chad May 22, 2013 at 08:27 PM
It just makes more sense for these oil companies to be more pro-active about preventing these disasters than to clean them up after it's to late. Something has to change. It's happened to many times and caused to much damage of late. http://www.hazmatspillresponse.com


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »