The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

Remarks by the President After a Roundtable Meeting with Local Residents in Gulfport, Mississippi

Chimney’s Restaurant
Gulfport, Mississippi

12:45 P.M. CDT

THE PRESIDENT:  -- the business owners, as well as the Mayor, and the Governor and First Lady for Thad and myself.

As you can see, this is a spectacular beach.  We’ve got Missy, who is the owner of a wonderful inn, the Edgewater Inn and, George [sic], he’s got a great restaurant -- what’s the name of the restaurant?

MR. WEINBERG:  The Blow Fly Inn.

THE PRESIDENT:  And Missy was mentioning she has already seen a 40 percent drop in her occupancy since this crisis occurred, partly because of cancellations of large groups that were planning to stay there.

It just gives you a sense -- and those folks who were going to stay at Missy’s would have been eating at George’s [sic], so it gives you a sense of the kind of potential economic impact that a crisis like this could have on individual business owners.  And, obviously, they’ve got to make payroll and they’ve got employees -- it trickles down and has an impact on them as well. 

So we are going to be working with business owners like this, with governors and mayors to make sure that they are made whole as a consequence of this crisis.  But we also want to make sure that we are in this for the long haul.  And the full effects of this may not be known immediately.  They may not be known three months from now and may not be fully known for another six months or a year.  We just want to make sure we got structure in place so that people like Missy and George [sic] are adequately dealt with. 

That's going to be a top topic of mine when I meet with BP officials on Wednesday.  And so I just want to say how much I appreciate them sharing these stories.

All right?  Thank you, everybody.

END
12:48 P.M. CDT

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