Pascagoula businesses expect boost from shipyard's time change - - The News for South Mississippi

Pascagoula businesses expect boost from shipyard's time change


By Patrice Clark – bio | email

JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) – Northrop Grumman shipbuilders will no longer work four days a week. The company announced Thursday that all its Gulf Coast shipyards will return to a five day-eight hour work schedule. Company leaders say the change will hopefully improve the work environment. 

News of the schedule change has several local business owners smiling. With 12,000 Northrop Grumman employees now working on a Friday, the owners hope to rake in some extra cash.

"When you are talking about a large amount of employees, it does make a difference," Michael Colborn said.

New shop owner Michael Colborn recently started delivering food to the shipyard. He said the new schedule gives him a chance to continue building his customer base.

"It is just building on traffic every day is what you do." 

A block away at Petit Boys, employees say they too are hungry for new business. 

"I am excited about it and I can't wait," hostess Avonell Redding said. "The waitresses here are going to enjoy that three fold."   

Monica's Restaurant in Pascagoula is also ready to welcome hungry shipbuilders to taste some southern cuisine. 

"They would like the fish and catfish and stuff I have on Fridays," owner Monica Ballew said. 

Ballew said Northrop Grumman's announcement couldn't have come at a better time because the bad economy is eating away her business. 

"With Northrop Grumman doing this, it will definitely help us out a lot." 

Now, business owners say they're just waiting with anticipation to fill their empty tables with shipyard workers. 

"Northrop Grumman adds a lot to this town and without them I don't believe Pascagoula will be the place that it is," Redding said.  

Northrop Grumman's new schedule goes into effect May 31. Company officials said shift times are still being discussed by company officials.

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