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Monday, January 26, 2015 - 6:28pm

Georgia Ports Set New Records, Thanks In Part To West Coast Labor Fights

Georgia Ports Authority officials are predicting steady, but slightly slower, growth for the ports in 2015.
The GPA reports that 2014 set new records, with 7.4 percent growth in the number of tons of cargo moved during the calendar year.
Executive Director Curtis Foltz says he expects much of that trend to continue.

"I am fairly comfortable in saying this will be another record year for the Authority," he says. "In total tonnage handled, probably in automobiles, no question in containers handled."

But GPA officials say they expect the rate of growth to moderate somewhat over the next few months.

Foltz says labor disputes in California are diverting some ship traffic to the East Coast. He says he believes some of that business will stick around even after those contract issues are resolved.

"We will keep some of it, so we will continue to post growth, but I think it would be unrealistic to expect the type of growth we have experienced the first half of the year," he says.

But Foltz says once those issues are resolved, the growth rate at the Ports of Savannah and Brunswick should level off.

The GPA's board met on January 26 near Savannah.