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Gulfport Claims $3.6 Million in BP Oil Spill Losses

The City of Gulfport claims a decline in tourists and visitors resulted in more than $3.6 million dollars in lost revenues following the Deep Horizon Oil Spill in 2010.

An 11-page claim by the City of Gulfport demands more than $3.6 million in lost revenue due to a decline in visitors at Gulfport's Marina and Waterfront District after the 2010 BP oil spill.

The law firm Motley Rice, LLC filed the claim in January on behalf of the city seeking economic damages.

"The City has suffered, and will continue to suffer, injuries and damages due to the fact that it has been unable to collect revenue and other economic benefits due to the decline in tourism and declining interest in visiting the City as a result of the pollution and damage to the Gulf region done by the Oil Spill," according to the claim.

The decline in tourists and visitors affected many of the revenues collected from various services and taxes in the city, officials said. Everything from marina operations, taxes, water and sewer operations and even property values were negatively affected by the decline in visitors, according to the claim against BP.

The city claims $310,442 in lost revenues at the Gulfport Municipal Marina, which includes lost of revenue in 2010 as well as during the projected recovery period of five years.

According to the city, the decline in tourists hurt local businesses and reduced taxable sales. The city claims $365,468 in lost revenues from sales tax.

The spill caused the most damage in loss of revenue from the city's water and sewer operations, according to the claim. The city claims $1.2 in lost revenues from water and sewer operations, which includes $326,146 of lost revenue in fiscal year 2010 and $906,198 of lost revenue during the projected recover period following the spill.

"Gulfport experienced a decline in tourists and visitors. With fewer people in the City, use of the City's water and sewer services declined as well. Revenue from Water & Sewer Operations therefore suffered a corresponding decline. The City nevertheless continued to incur expenses to operate and maintain its water, sewer, and storm water utility services," according to the claim.

In total, the city demands $3,647,086 to be paid for losses incurred and losses estimated during the projected recovery period as a result of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill on April 20, 2010.

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Rick Boze March 06, 2013 at 04:16 PM
I think most of the decline came from silly ordinances the city passed. And by the time the city rescinded them the damage was done. I've been watching the real estate for the last 3 years and now I'm seeing houses for sale in the lower(south of 22nd) selling for 120k or less. Because everytime they come home to Gulfport there is a new law. During a downturn is never been a time to up the ante, less is more. Gulfport should of had an influx of people because of its location inside the Bay. The lost of revenue is because those who refinanced, during the boom, realized it was better to walk away. And the banks let them sit for 2 years. Gulfport use to be an oasis in St Petersburg, now even people close by think Gulfport is the one in Mississippi.
Rainbow Energy March 07, 2013 at 05:06 AM
If Gulfport experienced a decline in tourism because a number of its taxpayers entreated its city council to get serious about the dogs roaming freely and the unsightly and disgusting litter, consisting mostly of dog poo, dirty diapers, and cig butts, I really question if those are the people we want visiting our area anyway. Let's Increase promotion of our area to folks who have respect for the environment , themselves, and the citizens who live here.

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