Hawaii & Alaska
AP Photo/Rob Stapleton, File

AK - Exxon Valdez trustees and stakeholders differ on spending of final oil spill settlement funds

Nearly 30 years after ExxonMobil agreed to pay $900 million to help restore resources damaged by the company’s disastrous 1989 Prince William Sound oil spill, more money remains than was once expected, and there are plenty of ideas as to what should be done with it.

Nearly 30 years after ExxonMobil agreed to pay $900 million to help restore resources damaged by the company’s disastrous 1989 Prince William Sound oil spill, more money remains than was once expected, and there are plenty of ideas as to what should be done with it.

The Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council, the entity responsible for allocating the civil settlement funds, approved structural changes to the traditional spending plan in January for the roughly $200 million left in the spill restoration accounts that many opposed to the changes have dubbed a “spend-down plan.”

Specifically, the six EVOS trustees — three state-appointed and three federally-appointed — voted to shift the council’s previously annual public review and meetings to a five-year cycle. In October, the council is expected to review and vote on 10-year funding proposals.

Shauna Hegna, president of the Kodiak-area Alaska Native regional corporation Koniag Inc., said in an interview the company has long been in the camp that there is significant value in creating an endowment for the remaining EVOS settlement money that could fund projects in perpetuity.


Read more.