Oregon Democrat Earl Blumenauer proposed a bill that would require the U.S. Department of Justice to “to quickly reimburse state and local law enforcement agencies up front for costs associated with responding to the armed takeover.” Then, the U.S. Attorney General could sue Bundy and the other militants to cover those costs.
Blumenaur held the federal government responsible for prolonging the occupation, by refusing to step in earlier and arrest the militants. However, if the Justice Department repays the Harney County, they could sue the militants involved.
“It would allow the federal government to go after the armed people who started it,” Blumenauer said. “But in the meantime, the people of Harney County shouldn’t have to suffer twice — had the disruption and then have to pay the bill.”
— ThinkProgress (@thinkprogress) February 3, 2016
The occupation’s post to taxpayers is still unclear. A Oregon judge estimated last month that the occupation cost $70,000 a day, while Blumenaur estimated $100,000 a day. While Bundy and six other militants were arrested, the occupation is still ongoing, and is currently in its 33rd day.
Although it appeared that the occupation was winding down after the arrests last week, the remaining militia members are not planning on giving up soon.