(Indianapolis, Ind.) - The State of Indiana is ready to pay out $5 million to the victims of the August 13 stage collapse at the Indiana State Fair.
That’s the most the state can pay in damages to the collapse victims, 40 of which were injured and seven were killed.
Attorney General Greg Zoeller said the payments would be distributed soon. That will be done by Kenneth Feinberg, the same person who administered compensation to 9-11 victims and those affect by the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
"We want to move to pay the full $5 million that the state's law allows as soon as an equitable formula can be devised. My goal is to focus on the needs of victims and their families while minimizing the expense of lengthy and costly litigation. In light of the urgency for victims of the State Fair tragedy and the statutory limits on compensation, the advice of Mr. Feinberg who has faced these circumstances before will be invaluable in developing this claims process effectively," Zoeller said.
The Attorney General’s office said Feinberg is an unpaid consultant in the matter.
Feinberg is also working with the Indiana State Fair Commission on equitable distribution of private donations made to the Indiana State Fair Remembrance Fund. As of this week, the fund had grown to $263,000.
Indiana law states the $5 million compensation is the maximum allowed by a statutory liability cap for a single incident. Individuals are capped at receiving $700,000 from the state.
During a press conference Wednesday, Indiana State Fair Commission chairman Andre Lacy declined to answer whether the state may consider waiving the $5 million cap.