This session, lawmakers are too eager this year to adjourn and start campaigning for re-election to poke around into anything too controversial. But the outside world keeps intruding at the Gold Dome. Last month, it was severe winter weather. This month, it’s a lack of federal funding for the Savannah Harbor deepening project.
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.
A Georgia congressman says he expects the U.S. House to take action this fall to eliminate a bureaucratic obstacle to deepening the shipping channel to the Port of Savannah. Democratic Rep. John Barrow of Augusta visited the port Wednesday and said he expects a committee to take up a bill removing the barrier by early October.
The Georgia Ports Authority has unveiled a new Mobile Command Center for use in hurricanes or other natural disasters. Ports officials said in a release Thursday that Georgia Ports Authority's entire operation can be run from the mobile center.
Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal is expected to sign a new inland port agreement with the Georgia Ports Authority and Cordele Intermodal Services. Georgia Ports Authority officials say the deal, which will be signed Wednesday afternoon in Cordele, will help create and expand international markets for regional businesses.
Georgia Ports Authority officials say a record 2.4 million tons of cargo moved through the state's ports in April. Officials say April's record is an increase of about 108,530 tons over the same time period last year. In a release Monday, GPA officials said the state's ports also saw a 4 percent increase in container traffic in April.
Three Georgia politicians have written to President Barack Obama urging him to include the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project authorization increase in his budget amendment to Congress. The president’s budget allocated just $1.28 million for the harbor expansion project — which is expected to cost $652 million.
Georgia officials say they're taking a closer look at having state taxpayers pay a larger upfront share to begin deepening the waterway to the bustling Port of Savannah. The federal government's share of the $652 million project is proving tough to get.
Governor Nathan Deal said Monday he will be proposing more state money to help pay for the deepening of the Savannah port. Deal told the Georgia Ports Authority he plans to include an additional $50 million in his budget proposal for the fiscal year that begins in July.