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No matter what you think about hurricane -- The coastal city of Virginia Beach, Virginia wasn't taking any chances when it came to being prepared for hurricane Irene.
Fortunately those preparations paid off and today.
Banks are pretty much back to normal for this town here with a success story will set some junior the mayor of Virginia Beach mayor welcome great to CO.
We'll -- you so much led to be with you are right so -- full disclosure here I used to work for the Virginian pilot and ledger star not -- And some very familiar with the area you've got to tell me what is any impact on Virginia Beach.
Well we've been very blessed are we prepare for this -- nation we.
-- Beck weighted are low lying areas and got the people out of those that.
Could really been impacted severely where they had the tornado.
Also I'm happy to say that we are invested in the hurricane protection program.
In 1998 where we tripled the size of our beach and expanded our -- -- which I'm sure you remember that.
-- actually I remember that very well He had 3300 people evacuated and at the height of the storm 30% were without power.
And yet you're calling this a success because why.
Well first of all no one got hurt or killed that's the key thing secondly.
We are ready for business today.
We've gotten things cleaned up.
The beaches cleaned up the roads are cleaned up.
We're expecting a great week here we have a rock and roll half marathon this weekend with 151000 runners have an American music festival Africa through our.
Little had there for Virginia Beach if you don't have anything to do that got some stuff going on down there brio.
Bit even you guys are in such good shape you actually sent emergency personnel to other states.
Yeah yes we did we since sounded New Jersey their own call there up there in mail or call rate to be called in if needed and no we just.
-- -- All the people that work for the city Richard -- not the politicians the people who work for the city.
They just absolutely were prepared to fire department police department.
Our volunteer rescue squad system they were overstaffed believe it or not overstaffed for this event.
So -- consider it's very very lucky to have equality of people living in serving -- we need have a lot.
And experience with this.
You know disasters.
Big storms you clearly have learned your lessons about how to be prepared.
-- what would you tell other towns to do to be prepared for this kind of event.
We'll have live in this city my trial life that in 1962 the way indication was in my house I was a very young person but I remember quite clearly.
And I'm -- to say that.
You have to look ahead and you have to invest money the project for tripling the size of the beach and the or what was about a 150 million dollars.
But if you look at the infrastructure that -- protected and -- as you know terrorism is over a billion dollar industry.
In the city of Virginia Beach direct tax revenues were -- -- of -- hundred million dollars annually.
So I think we're very wise to make these investments to protect our people and our infrastructure.
Well I think you know as you look at this I think it's interesting -- -- Virginia Beach at one point was at a crossroads.
Where they can have said well we'll just left the tourism business -- -- do whatever it's gonna do -- will take charge.
And we'll make changes -- and that's exactly what you did right.
That's exactly what we did and that's the reason like this week in -- bit fill -- up our hotel rooms were -- that's were about 50% occupied right now.
By Friday will be a 100% occupied we have 101000 hotel rooms that's a lot of revenue be -- provided to the -- Virginia -- While it's good news that's certainly good news thanks for coming on tonight really appreciate your help and fascinating story with Virginia Beach before you go tell our viewers.
Exactly what events are going on there.
Well lets us live we've got the American music festival and the rock and roll half marathon.
Coming up this week yen to one -- visit it will have beautiful -- there -- problems with.
Wow that's a lot to deliver on Mary thanks for the help we really appreciate your time.
They -- you.
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