BP Legislation signing ceremony

Governor Phil Bryant signed off on the BP Legislation, bringing over $700 million in settlement funds to the Coast.

After countless hours of hard work, Governor Phil Bryant signed off on a $750 million settlement fund regarding the BP oil spill damages. Seventy-five percent of the money will go towards the Gulf Coast. Twenty-five percent goes to the general funds. Gulf Coast Chamber of Commerce CEO Adele Lyons said, “Seventy-five percent about $30 million a year to transformational projects that will create jobs.”

Governor Phil Bryant said, “It will have a tremendous impact, 75 percent of $750 million over the next 15 years here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast for economic development benefits.”

The next step is for the governor to make appointments to the advisory committee, looking at projects, finding ways to spend the money. “I understand there are a couple of projects that are coming in and I see those having real economic development,” said Lyons.

An example of these developmental benefits includes renovating the beach scene on the Coast. Another $20 million will go towards projects that will be announced in November. “We will put $20 million into bringing the beaches to a better level so we can move some of those storm drains off the beach.”

All of these projects aren’t viewed as expenses or waste of money, but as investments. Hancock Whitney Corporation President/ CEO John Hairston said, “Just like a good business, this money can be invested to ensure that our children and our grandchildren see just as much benefit, if not more, than the people who are here administering it.”

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