Treasurer Kennedy talks about the BP settlement
BATON ROUGE- Just a few weeks ago, state officials announced Louisiana would be getting $6.8 billion from the lawsuit with BP over the 2010 oil spill. This morning, Treasurer John Kennedy stopped by 2une In to break down what this money means for the state.
Five billion dollars of the settlement is for natural resource damage, $1 billion is for state economic damages and $787 million is for Clean Water Act penalties.
The money will be paid out over fifteen years, with the first check coming sometime in January.
Kennedy says he's happy the state settled, but there are a few things we need to look out for.
"We have to keep people from stealing the money," said Kennedy. "You're going to have all kinds of consultants coming out of the woodwork that want to study the problem, write papers and hold conferences, but we have to tell them ‘no.'"
Kennedy also stressed the importance of a plan to make sure the state gets all of the money it's owed. Since the settlement is being paid out over time, there's no guarantee that the company will be able to pay the entire amount when the time comes.
The final thing Kennedy expressed was just how important this money is to Louisiana and the gulf coast.
"The state makes its living off the wetlands," said Kennedy. Let's spend this money to restore our wetlands and to rehabilitate the gulf, let's not waste it."