Savannah’s harbor expansion is moving forward following the signing of a key bill Tuesday. President Obama signed the Water Resources Reform and Development Act, or WRRDA green lighting the deepening of the Port of Savannah. The Savannah Harbor project is one of 34 water infrastructure projects covered by the bill that Obama said will be key for the economy. “As more of the world’s cargo is transported on these massive ships, we’ve got to make sure that we’ve got bridges high enough and ports that are big enough to hold them and accommodate them so that our businesses can keep selling goods made in America to the rest of the world,” said Obama during the Tuesday signing.
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed is widely expected to cruise to a second term in November. He faces two largely unknown competitors. And speculation has shifted to what he might run for next. Political experts say the answer could be the governor’s office or Congress but many questions remain.
Gov. Nathan Deal is in Panama touring the major expansion underway of the Panama Canal and says the project there underscores the need for the Port of Savannah to deepen its shipping channel. Deal returns to Georgia on Tuesday.
US Army Under Secretary Joseph Westfal became the latest Obama administration official to voice support for a plan to deepen the port of Savannah yesterday. Westfal toured the port on a two-day trip to the the Georgia coast.
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.
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed is hinting he has plans for a higher office. The mayor elected four years ago is seeking his second term in City Hall this year. But Morris News Service reports he said at a luncheon this week he also has "other plans" after finishing as mayor.
Conservation groups in two states say the Army Corps of Engineers needs a South Carolina pollution permit now, not later, for the $650 million deepening of the Savannah River shipping channel. Attorneys late Tuesday filed a response to a corps request that a federal judge dismiss their lawsuit against the project.
The South Carolina Supreme Court is set to decide who gets to regulate the Savannah River. The justices will hear arguments Tuesday in a lawsuit filed by environmentalists that say the Savannah River Maritime Commission created by South Carolina lawmakers oversees that state's side of the river.
Tuesday is the deadline for public comments in a plan to deepen Savannah's harbor from 42 to 47 feet. Supporters and opponents of the project have been picking over the massive proposal and have different conclusions for federal officials who'll make a final yes-or-no decision later this year. The US Army Corps of Engineers spent 14 years studying plans to deepen the Savannah harbor.
The board that runs South Carolina's environmental agency has decided not to reconsider its permit allowing deeper dredging in the Savannah River, setting up a courtroom showdown next week in the fight over helping bigger ships reach the port in Savannah, Ga.