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Some Gulf oil spill victims continue to wait for compensation

I continue to receive emails from Gulf Coast residents who are battling with the Gulf Coast Claims Facility for compensation for their oil spill losses. Lonnie Craft, the vice president of a boat manufacturing company in Pensacola, Fla, has been waiting since Aug. 23, more than two months after filing a claim, and still has no answer from the GCCF. Craft is one of an unknown number of claimants whose claims have been “under review” since the day the GCCF opened its doors. (I wrote about the issue here).

Craft wrote this email to the GCCF today and gave me permission to reprint it here. The emphasis is in the original email.

If you are having similar problems with your claim, tell me your story. You can contact me here: arestuccia@washingtonindependent.com.

Good morning GCCF,

** My name is Lonnie Craft, vice president of Blazer Boats Inc. in Pensacola, Fl. I filed a 1 month emergency claim nearly 9 weeks (August 23) ago. So much for emergencies! Glad you guys aren’t ambulance people attending to me in a bad accident! I would have bled to death a long time ago! The problem is; Blazer Boats ** bleeding to death because of the BP spill fiasco. You guys know as well as I that no one wants a new fishing boat when there is oil all over the gulf and the waters are closed. The spill absolutely killed the boat buying market and is ** dead. The boat purchasing mood of the public is absolutely gone until probably next year. **

** How does that not qualify as an emergency? Is BP destroying our business that my brother and I have owned and run for 32 years not qualify as an emergency? You want to tell our employees and the ones we have had to lay off, that BP and the GCCF doesn’t consider their lives as important? Why don’t you let Mr. Feinburg tell them? I think he would come away in a lot of pain!**

** Right now, I am inquiring about ** One friggin’ month! I don’t have the energy to ask about any others yet. I will calmly explain how that one was filed. I filed the first month’s claim online, following the procedure list and the documents required list as was asked for. I scanned the documents and emailed them along with the claim. I made copies of the documents and overnighted them to the GCCF via UPS Red Label so you would have backup copies. I know you guys are overwhelmed with paperwork so I didn’t want to risk you losing any of it. So what happened? The GCCF sends us a letter several (Emergency? What Emergency? ) later. I resend those documents that same day, emailing and Red Labeling them again. So now the ** Emergency payout is being; and I am copying and pasting this from your website; “**After the GCCF notified the claimant that the claim is missing necessary documentation, the claimant sent the GCCF additional documents and the claim is being re-evaluated.” **UH HUH! 9 weeks so far! **

** Do you think maybe I could get some type of answer other than your standard “It’s being analyzed/evaluated/used/ abused” or whatever other standard GCCF answer you can come up with? Is that asking too much? Do you need more paperwork? Do you need anything explained? Do you need help? I am damned good with numbers and a calculator and be happy to come help you! Just let me know something, OK?**

Thank You,

Lonnie Craft

Vice President

Blazer Boats Inc.

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