"Seventeen years after the disaster, and nearly twelve years after the original jury verdict, the plaintiffs are still awaiting resolution of the lawsuit."
- Rep. LeDoux
(Juneau) - House Joint Resolution 9, a resolution sponsored by Representative Gabrielle LeDoux (R-Kodiak) that would ask the US Congress to honor the judicial process and not pass any legislation that would effect the outcome of the settlement of the Exxon Valdez oil spill disaster, has passed the Alaska State Legislature.
Further HJR 9 merged with SJR 17 in the Senate Finance Committee and now contains additional language that urges the United States Department of Justice or the Alaska Department of Law to pursue the $100 million made available for mitigation of unanticipated damages stemming from the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill.
"Seventeen years after the disaster, and nearly twelve years after the original jury verdict, the plaintiffs are still awaiting resolution of the lawsuit," said Representative LeDoux.
The 1991 civil settlement contains a "Reopener for Unknown Injury" clause which provides that between September 1, 2002 and September 1, 2006, the government can request an additional $100 million from the Exxon Corporation if it determines that the spill had caused substantial, unanticipated harm, and present a cost-effective plan to remedy that harm.
"Essentially, the Senate merged the two resolutions so that the Reopener, which has to be acted upon prior to September 1, 2006, can be addressed," said Representative LeDoux. "The State has until June 2, 2006 to provide Exxon with detailed restoration claims and all relevant supporting information."