Posts Tagged ‘Kenneth Feinberg’

Kenneth Feinberg,The Oil Fund Czar,Decides Who Gets The Cash,IRS Gets Their Cut

June 23, 2010

NEW ORLEANS — Is a strip club that caters to oil-rig workers entitled to a piece of the $20 billion fund for victims of the Gulf of Mexico disaster? How about a souvenir stand on a nearly empty beach? Or a far-off restaurant that normally serves Gulf seafood?

The farther the massive spill’s effects spread, the harder it will get for President Barack Obama’s new compensation czar to decide who deserves to be paid.

Fishermen, rig workers and others left jobless by the oil spill seem certain to get their slices of the pie, sooner or later. It’s the people and businesses a few degrees – and perhaps hundreds of miles – removed from the Gulf but still dependent on its bounty who will have a tougher time getting their claims past Kenneth Feinberg, the lawyer who handled payouts for families of Sept. 11 victims.

“How can there not be a trickle-down effect?” said Jeffrey Berniard, a New Orleans lawyer who represents about 100 people and firms filing claims against BP PLC. “How can the businesses that serve all the people who work in the industry not be affected if all the people in these industries are out of work?”

That could be a problem for many of those who need money most urgently, said Tuan Nguyen, deputy director of the Mary Queen of Vietnam Community Development Corp. in eastern New Orleans, where many immigrants and their families work in the seafood business.

“It’s a very cash-involved industry. Some of the boat captains or boat owners, they sell fish on the side of the road or directly to families. They don’t have records of that,” Nguyen said. The only group guaranteed of getting their money is not AIG but IRS..