Written by Kathy Olivarez Friday, 15 November 2013 10:21
Hidalgo and Willacy counties could qualify for millions of dollars paid by British Petroleum to help the Gulf Coast recover from an oil spill the 2010.
Tuesday, the Hidalgo County Commissioners Court listened to a presentation by Hugo Berlanga on how the county could qualify for a portion of the British Petroleum Restoration Fund. Berlanga said if hired to do the job, his firm would pursue funding for Hidalgo and Willacy Counties from monies in the Restore Act, estimated to produce between $3.526 billion and $11.8 billion in restoration funds across the Gulf Coast states. Texas’s share of the funds would have two streams. One is an infrastructure component (set at no more than seven percent of the money) and the other is an environmental component.
Berlanga said criminal settlements of $2.8 billion already allocated eight percent of the money, or $224 million, to Texas. All of this money will go into the environmental component. The Natural Resource Damages Act is estimated to be $5 billion and will be dedicated to environmental components.