Biloxi Mayor Says City Is Working To Prepare For Black Spring Break

Mayor Holloway says the city is preparing for what is expected to be an onslaught of college students and other people who want to party on the Coast the weekend of April 7th through the 9th.

The mayor stresses that Black Spring Break is a public safety issue, and his main concern is protecting people and property.

"This has been the most time consuming thing I've done since I became mayor, but we're doing what we think is best for the City of Biloxi and the Mississippi Gulf Coast," Mayor Holloway said.

Last year, crowds estimated at 30,000 overwhelmed police.

"It's not going to be pretty, what we're going to have, but I will say it's going to be a lot better than it was last year."

Holloway has caught some criticism for recent remarks he made to the Edgewater Rotary Club. Holloway told the group that stronger law enforcement would hopefully drive away any future Black Spring Breaks.

"What I meant by that is we don't want the people that were here last year acting out again this year. We don't want those people here. Anybody in their right mind doesn't want these people here, and we want those people to go away, and we want to have a good spring break for everybody to enjoy. But we can't with the behavior that we had last year."

Holloway is running for re-election, and a month after spring break, voters go to the polls. The mayor says despite the timing, he hopes voters won't hold the event against him.

"I don't care what anybody says. We're doing the best we possibly can, and if somebody's gonna hold me accountable for something like that, I don't know if that's right or not."

There are no planned events and no overwhelming hotel bookings for this year's party. That's why the mayor says he doesn't have much confidence in Juan Davis, the man who says he's promoting the event.

"He came down here, and he didn't have two nickels to rub together. He says he's a promoter and been doing it for 28 years, no, been doing it for 18 years and he's 28 years old so he started when he was 10 years old, so you know his credibility in my opinion is not very good."

Mayor Holloway says the Highway Patrol will have two helicopters in the air as well as 100 state troopers and officers from across the state who will be on duty.

Holloway says it will probably take more than the $50,000 in public safety overtime already budgeted to pay out of town officers.