STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA) - The controversy surrounding Starkville's denial of a permit for a gay pride parade continues to swirl.
Now economic developers say it could hurt business.
"We represent all business. And any time there is an issue that arises that divides a community, it affects businesses in one way or another," said Scott Maynard, CEO of the Greater Starkville Development Partnership. "It's very concerning to me because I think part of what today's industry looks at is all of their employees they value. In order for them to be successful, they value all of their employees, and that includes the gay community."
"I think we've done a lot of work in this town to welcome visitors, and when a message like that is put out, not everyone is welcomed. Of course, people will stay away," said Starkville Mayor Lynn Spruill.
The mayor says she has emailed all the aldermen who voted to deny the parade's permit, seeking them to change their vote.
She got one response, and that board member was comfortable with the vote.