Haslam: Deal to open Smokies was too late

From Der Kaiser:

Haslam told reporters that banks were already closed by the time the state was informed about how much money to wire to the federal government on Friday afternoon.

The governor said the closure of the Smokies is especially hard on the local economy, because this is normally the busiest time at the park. According to park officials, it averages about 1.1 million visitors in October alone.

"October for the Smokies and the people around it is like December for retailers in a mall. This is when all the business happens," he said. "Every weekend they lose is an irrecoverable revenue situation."