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Tuesday, October 19, 2010 - 11:01am

Report: Savannah Leads In Growth

Savannah leads the state in employment and salary growth.

The Milken Insitute ranked Savannah Georgia's best and the nation's 40th best-performing metro area for job and salary growth, using 2009 numbers that rely a lot the high-tech sector.

In fact, the Santa Monica-based economic think tank placed Savannah second nationally in relative high-tech year-to-year job growth.

Michael Toma of Armstrong Atlantic State University's Center for Regional Analysis says, the ranking is likely the result of one company's good fortune.

"With the growth in the worldwide economy, what that does is help companies in the high-tech aircraft industry, like Gulfstream," Toma says. "There's an increase in worldwide demand for a product that's being manufactured here locally and that draws income into our regional economy."

Savannah-based jet maker Gulfstream Aerospace has been ramping up production.

Other factors for the ranking might include job and salary growth from military, tourism and port-related sectors.

Columbus and Augusta also ranked in the nation's top 100 metro areas.