ENVIRONMENT
10/20/2010 07:06 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Bumpy Start To BP Fund Puzzles Gulf

The last Saturday night in September, Timothy Farris shut down his Godfather's Pizza restaurant here in this small Gulf Coast beach town, a victim, he says, of the dismal tourist slump that accompanied oil and tar balls washing ashore from the giant BP spill.

Mr. Farris had applied for $258,000 in emergency compensation from a $20 billion fund the oil company set up to help stricken businesses. But weeks had passed without a verdict on whether he would get anything, and he couldn't afford to stay open any longer, he says.

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