Spill, Baby, Spill
I am working to ensure that BP pays to clean up the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. I joined with my colleagues to pass S. 3473, a bill that amends the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 and authorizes more money to go to clean-up efforts. President Obama signed this bill into law on June 15, 2010. I have also cosponsored the SPILL Act (H.R. 5503) which passed the House in July. The bill will reform maritime liability laws to ensure that the families of those killed or injured in the BP spill and other such tragedies are justly compensated for their losses. The bill awaits action in the Senate.
To help prevent future spills, I joined with my colleagues to introduce the Deepwater Horizon Inquiry Commission Act (H.R. 5241), which would establish an independent, non-partisan commission to investigate the devastating oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and provide recommendations to avoid such disasters in the future. President Obama issued an executive order modeled on this legislation to establish a commission. I joined with my colleagues to introduce H.R. 5481 to give the commission subpoena power as part of its investigation. I am pleased that the bill passed in the House on June 23, 2010 and is now awaiting action in the Senate.
For many years, I have been a leader in the fight against drilling off the coast of California. I joined with my colleagues to introduce the West Coast Ocean Protection Act (H.R. 5213), which would permanently prohibit offshore drilling in federal waters off the Pacific Coast. This bill is pending before the Committee on Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources.