AL city considers paying Auburn scientists to probe for lingering oil spill damage

ORANGE BEACH, Ala. (AP) - A city in coastal Alabama is considering paying for a scientific study that could determine whether its beaches are clean after last year's massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Auburn University professors Joel Hayworth and Prabhakar Clement have asked Orange Beach's City Council for about $100,000 to support their work. The Mobile Press-Register reports that the council did not immediately vote on the proposal this week.

Mayor Tony Kennon said paying for the study could be money well spent.

The city has collected air, water and sediment samples to test for oil and dispersants. Kennon has pushed BP PLC to clean the city's beaches in time for spring break.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.