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Ala. Governor Questions Oil Spill Payments

Montgomery, AL – Gov. Bob Riley calls the oil spill claims process ``extortion'' and says he's waiting for answers to questions raised in a letter to claims czar Ken Feinberg.

Riley said Monday he's concerned that underpayments by Feinberg's Gulf Coast Claims Facility will force businesses to sign away prematurely the right to sue BP.

Amy Weiss, a spokeswoman for Feinberg, responded to questions about Riley's criticisms by saying, ``Mr. Feinberg just received Gov. Riley's letter and will respond in due course.''

Riley's letter asks for the total number of claims filed and the number paid in full. It also asks the number of claims asking more than $100,000 and paid in full.

Riley asked whether people working for the claims facility are paid based on number of claims handled or amount of payments authorized.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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