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President Wants Big Increase in Offshore Inspections

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Obama administration wants Congress to
approve $80 million in new spending for the agency that oversees
offshore drilling.

He says his plan can be paid for by doubling the amount of money
the government collects for inspections of offshore oil and gas
operations.

In a letter to congressional leaders, the White House budget
office says the money is needed to strengthen oversight of offshore
oil and gas operations, reorganize the agency formerly known as the
Minerals Management Service and better respond to catastrophic oil
spills such as the BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Congress recently approved $29 million in emergency spending to
hire hundreds of new offshore drilling inspectors.


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