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NEW ORLEANS -- Almost a year after a deadly explosion and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, BP is telling the administrator of the $20-billion fund for the disaster's victims that the formula used in calculating final payments is too generous.
In a document posted on the Gulf Coast Claims Facility's Web site, a major business -- confirmed by a spokeswoman for the fund to be written by BP -- said Feinberg's methodology artificially inflates future expected losses for the victims, according to the Associate Press. The document further said there is no factual basis to assume Gulf-wide claimants will see losses this year equaling 70 percent of their 2010 losses and losses in 2012 equaling 30 percent of 2010.
The name of the business and other identifying references were removed from the document posted online. The GCCF has been redacting comments posted on its Web site to remove the names of people and businesses, according to the news organization.
The complaint comes at a time when the administrator, Kenneth Feinberg, has already been under the microscope for red tape and delays. According to the Associated Press, Gulf residents and businesses have filed comments with the GCCF complaining Feinberg has moved too slowly in making payments; others have complained the payments are too low. In addition, many have complained that the methodology he has proposed for final payments low-balls the future impact of the spill on victims.
For his part, Feinberg -- who handled the September 11th Victim Fund -- said he will consider all comments, according to the news outlet. He acknowledged that the system is backlogged by the volume of oil spill claims. He recently said that he doesn’t think the entire $20 billion will be needed to compensate the victims. To date, roughly $3.4 billion has been paid out to 169,000 claimants.