Congressman Tim Griffin (AR-02) issued the following statement after visiting the Mayflower oil cleanup site on Monday:
"I was in Mayflower on Good Friday -- the day the pipeline ruptured -- and since then, I've demanded the relocation of the pipeline and the release of the reports, checked in with the impacted families and visited the site multiple times. Those who've been impacted by this nightmare deserve fair compensation, and they shouldn't face additional tax burdens as a result. I've already urged ExxonMobil to cover those costs, and this week I will introduce legislation to protect these victims from additional taxes. These families didn't ask for this spill and they shouldn't have to pay the IRS out of their disaster relief."
Since the oil spill on March 29, Rep. Griffin has closely tracked the cleanup effort and routinely spoken with representatives of the Unified Command and impacted residents. He has also called for the relocation of the Pegasus pipeline near Lake Maumelle.
Later this week, Griffin will introduce legislation that will exclude the gross income compensation provided by ExxonMobil to the victims of the oil spill from being taxable. It would classify the compensation as "a qualified disaster relief payment" under current law.