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The government's $1.1 billion Alaska oil spill settlement with Exxon actually will cost the oil giant a maximum of $524 million, once tax deductions and inflation are taken into account, according to a congressional analysis.

The analysis was released Wednesday at a House hearing where lawmakers questioned whether the Justice Department's position in the settlement talks may have been weakened by its concern over potentially embarrassing disclosures regarding the Coast Guard's role in the March 1989 Exxon Valdez spill.Justice officials acknowledged they were affected by Exxon's stated intent to press counterclaims against the Coast Guard and other agencies that were involved in the botched effort to contain the massive spill in Alaska's Prince William Sound.

However, they said Exxon's threats were not "a primary factor" in their decision to reach the settlement with Exxon, which they defended as a good deal for taxpayers and the environment.