East Palestine Settlement Doesn’t Erase Government Dysfunction

(Washington, DC) – Today, a settlement for $600 million was reached in a class-action lawsuit against Norfolk Southern. While this is a positive development for those affected by the disaster, there is still much more to do to restore the community of East Palestine. FGI’s investigation of the government’s handling of the disaster so far has revealed a major conflict of interest between an EPA lawyer and the law firm representing Norfolk Southern and the EPA Administrator’s whereabouts the days following the disaster, which included trips to promote electric buses and meetings with Hollywood actor Idris Elba. FGI will continue our investigation so that the American people can know more about what our government is doing.

Peter McGinnis, spokesman for FGI, issued the following statement:

“This settlement may bring some resolution of this tragic saga for the residents East Palestine. However, it doesn’t change the history of a botched and callous government response: Pete Buttigieg initially refusing to visit the disaster sight, the troubling conflict of interest with an EPA lawyer’s spouse representing Norfolk Southern, and EPA Administrator Regan prioritizing electric buses and foreign trips with celebrities over the residents of East Palestine. The administration’s handling of this disaster presents a clear example of how dysfunctional government can be when those in powerful positions are apparently focused on special-interest agendas and self-promotion instead of the taxpayers they serve.”