Measure Limiting Asbestos Liability Clears Idaho Senate

March 22, 2012

Bottle-cap maker Crown Holdings might want to pop the top off a celebratory bottle, after a bill to limit its asbestos liability in Idaho cleared the Senate and headed to Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter for signature.

The measure cleared the chamber 19-15 on Tuesday, reflecting a strong minority’s reluctance to help it off the legal hook.

The House had approved the bill 47-22 in February.

For years, the Pennsylvania-based company has sought protection from claims filed by lung-disease patients.

Though it has just a handful of claims from Idaho, it also wants protections here from having to make future payments related to its ill-fated purchase of an asbestos-tainted company in 1963.

That’s resulted in $700 million in payouts, with 50,000 claims still pending.

Crown has won protections in 14 states.

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