A bill introduced this week in Congress had Georgia port officials feeling confident at its annual State of the Ports luncheon Thursday. That’s because the legislation would nix a 1999 spending cap on the Savannah Harbor deepening project.
Jasper County officials are threatening to take over the Jasper Ocean Terminal project. They complain that the effort, overseen jointly by Georgia and South Carolina, is mired in never-ending studies. South Carolina officials say progress is being made.
Port officials from Georgia and South Carolina have canceled their January meeting on the states' troubled plans to build a jointly owned port terminal on the Savannah River. They said an updated study on the economic viability of building the shipping terminal isn't ready.
The two-state board working on a $5 billion containership terminal on the Savannah River is going ahead with an updated market and other studies amid concern the terminal won't be needed as early as projected.
Georgia Port Authority officials are reporting record tonnage numbers for the fiscal year that ended in June. Total non-containerized cargo jumped about 16% from the previous fiscal year. The dock at Colonel's Island reported a 19% growth in auto and machinery traffic.
Georgia ports received record volumes in the 2012 fiscal year for total tonnage and the amount of containers and autos that came through the ports. The ports boosted overall tonnage to 26.5 million for an increase of 561,038 tons.
About 350,000 Georgia workers owe their jobs in some way to the Georgia ports. A report released by the University of Georgia says, 1-in-12 Georgia jobs is port-dependent. Critics say, the figures are inflated, counting every Wal-Mart greeter and store clerk as port-dependent since they work at a company that uses the ports.
A group of south Georgia leaders is pushing to establish a third state-run ocean port on the St. Marys River that forms the border with Florida. Supporters say a new port offers the prospect of new jobs in an area where unemployment is high.
State officials say the ports of Savannah and Brunswick experienced record volumes during 2011. Georgia Ports Authority released figures showing, the ports handled 26.1 million tons of cargo, a 4.3% increase over the previous year. In Savannah, the Authority handled a record 2.95 million containers, a 3.5% increase over 2010.