A federal judge says BP will begin paying up to $1 billion in settlements to compensate local governments across the Gulf Coast for lost tax revenue and other economic damages they blame on the company's 2010 oil spill.
An order issued Monday by U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier (BAHR'-bih-aye) says all of the payments to local governments must be made within 30 days.
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July 15 was the deadline for roughly 500 local governments in five states to decide whether to accept BP's settlement offers as part of a broader $18.7 billion agreement with the five Gulf states and the federal government over damage from the spill.
Barbier's order says BP says most local government entities have accepted the settlement.