Griffin: Frustrated with Exxon

U.S. Congressman Tim Griffin has been “frustrated” with the response by ExxonMobil in regard to oil spill in Mayflower in March. Six months later, Griffin said he is still looking for answers from the company about how they will compensate the community and fix the problem for the future.

“I’ve been very frustrated,” Griffin said. “I’ve had dozens and dozens and dozens of phone calls related to this.”

Griffin said that looking at three areas as a result of the spill — making the people affected whole, finding out everything that happened and making sure it doesn’t happen again — has been a long process for everyone involved.

“We’ve drawn a lot of attention to the Maumelle Watershed,” he said. And I still believe they should move the pipeline.”

Calling it a “non-partisan issue,” Griffin said that most central Arkansans believe the pipeline should be moved. There has not been an indication that the pipeline will be started back any time soon.

Getting more information from ExxonMobil and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration under the Department of Transportation has been a long process. Griffin said those looking at the materials are looking at what decisions were made, how they were made and why they were made. He said there are also questions about the negligence of not doing additional tests. He said that whatever information he receives, he places on the Internet as soon as possible.

But Griffin said he doesn’t believe ExxonMobil has been cooperative during the process. He also believes the head of Exxon’s pipeline division is the one who should be held responsible.

“I feel like instead of looking for a way to get a ‘yes’ for getting a claim, that they are looking for a way to say ‘no,’” he said. “They ought to be moving forward and they ought to be considering individual circumstances.

“The alternative is to give up, and we’re not giving up.”

Mayflower, six months later
Exxon aims for total remediation
Community still feeling strains of oil spill reputation
Ecosystem may long feel effects of oil spill
State, federal lawsuits awaiting judge's ruling on ExxonMobil's motion to dismiss

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