(Adds details, Valukas testimony)
WASHINGTON, June 17 General Motors Co
expects to begin processing victims' claims related to faulty
ignition switches by Aug. 1, Chief Executive Officer Mary Barra
will tell the U.S. Congress on Wednesday.
In prepared testimony to be delivered to the House of
Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee, Barra also will
say that Kenneth Feinberg, who is overseeing the creation of a
compensation fund, will have "full authority to establish
eligibility criteria for victims and determine compensation
The defective ignition switches in older model Chevrolet
Cobalts, Saturn Ions and other GM models have been linked to at
least 13 deaths.
Barra testified to the panel in early April and was unable
to answer many of the lawmakers' questions. She promised to come
back after the company's internal investigation was completed.
Barra announced the results of that investigation earlier
It outlined a long series of failures by GM personnel to
take the ignition switch problem seriously and she promised to
improve the company's performance and practices.
For more than a decade, GM engineers and others knew that
the ignition switch had design problems. Those problems can
cause GM cars to stall, which disables air bags and causes power
brakes and power steering systems to malfunction.
Anton Valukas, who headed GM's internal investigation, will
also appear before the House panel on Wednesday.
In his prepared testimony, he will say that "GM engineers
were fully aware of this problem but did not consider it a
Valukas' testimony portrays that shortcoming as "amazing."
(Reporting by Richard Cowan; Editing by Eric Beech)