Missouri Congressman Roy Blunt, the deputy ranking member on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, today announced his plan to introduce the Oil Spill Response and Assistance Act, designed to increase the liability of companies responsible for oil spills by an amount directly tied to profits. The legislation would establish a new liability cap equal to the last four quarters of the responsible party’s profits or double the current limit, whichever is greater.


Missouri Congressman Roy Blunt, the deputy ranking member on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, today announced his plan to introduce the Oil Spill Response and Assistance Act, designed to increase the liability of companies responsible for oil spills by an amount directly tied to profits. The legislation would establish a new liability cap equal to the last four quarters of the responsible party’s profits or double the current limit, whichever is greater.

The legislation will serve as the House companion to legislation introduced by Gulf state Senators David Vitter (La.), Jeff Sessions (Ala.), and Roger Wicker (Miss.).

In addition to establishing a new, higher liability cap, the legislation would also establish much greater reserve requirements for the amount of oil containment barriers, known as “boom,” capable of withstanding up to six-foot waves and would direct work on technology capable of capping leaks. The bill would also require an exhaustive report by September 1 from all agencies involved in the recent response in the Gulf of Mexico to evaluate the effectiveness of their practices and procedures.