Gov. Deal: Washington Must 'Step Up' Savannah Harbor Funding

Oct 12, 2017

Gov. Nathan Deal says the federal government needs to "step up" and increase funding to deepen the busy shipping channel to the Port of Savannah.

Deal told 1,400 people attending a lunchtime speech by the Georgia Ports Authority's chief executive Thursday in Savannah that a greater influx of funding from Washington is needed to endure the $973 million project gets finished without delays.

The Army Corps of Engineers began dredging the Savannah River in 2015 by spending the $266 million share owed by Georgia taxpayers upfront. Federal dollars have proven tougher to get.

President Donald Trump requested $50 million for the Savannah harbor expansion in his latest budget proposal.

Georgia ports chief Griff Lynch says the project needs at least $100 million annually beginning in 2019 to stay on schedule.