Key federal bill that would boost port funds heads to House - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Key bill that would boost port funding goes to House

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

The Savannah Harbor Expansion Project is closer to moving forward after a key federal bill is passed through the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. On Wednesday, U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston accompanied the committee's chairman at the Port of Savannah.

In the coming weeks, the Water Resource Development Act will go to the House floor. The bill, which increases the amount of money that can be spent on the harbor expansion, passed the committee and will soon head to the floor. Because of the strong bipartisan support for the project, there is strong optimism that the bill will pass this session.

"It's a project now we have all seen grown tremendously in public support but not just all over the state of Georgia and not just with all parties but nationally," Kingston said.

Kingston welcomed Pennsylvania U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster at the Georgia Ports Authority on Wednesday morning. Shuster is the chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and has been instrumental in helping the Water Resource Development Act move forward. The U.S. Senate has already passed its version of the water bill.

"There is a federal role in these types of projects and there has been 230 years our waterways our ports our harbors are absolutely critical to the health of the nation's economy," Shuster said. 

Shuster said for every $1 invested in the project, the U.S. economy will see $5.50 in return on the project. He believes it will make it all the way through this legislative session.

"I think there's a high, high probability that we're going to have a water bill this year. As I said when you deal with issues like this that have a bipartisan support - everybody believes," Shuster said. 

The bill authorizes the amount of money that can be spent on the project. But it will be the federal budget that will provide the main source of money. The state of Georgia has already set aside $231 million for the project, which is ready to be used once the bill is passed. Having just returned from a tour of the Panama Canal, Deal has more support for the project than ever.

"They anticipate that they will be finished in the sometime in the middle of 2015, and that's the reason we need to get started as quickly as possible because our projects is a three to four year dredging project. I'm going to be pushing, again, as soon as we get that last technical hurdle taken care of for us to move as quickly as possible to start the dredging," Deal said. 

Copyright 2013 WTOC. All rights reserved.

  • More WALB News10 HeadlinesMore News HeadlinesMore>>

  • New computer program to help police fight gang crime

    New computer program to help police fight gang crime

    Thursday, June 22 2017 7:41 PM EDT2017-06-22 23:41:17 GMT

    A new computer program will soon help Albany Police keep track of gang members' crimes. Dougherty District Attorney Greg Edwards discussed the new program with the Gang Task Force Thursday.

    More >>

    A new computer program will soon help Albany Police keep track of gang members' crimes. Dougherty District Attorney Greg Edwards discussed the new program with the Gang Task Force Thursday.

    More >>
  • Valdosta city leaders unanimously approve budget with $8.1 million increase

    Valdosta city leaders unanimously approve budget with $8.1 million increase

    Thursday, June 22 2017 6:47 PM EDT2017-06-22 22:47:08 GMT
    (Source:WALB)(Source:WALB)

    The Valdosta City Council unanimously approved a budget increase of more than $8 million Thursday night. It's the biggest increase the city has proposed in more than a decade. "We feel it's a good budget, our taxes are lower than our peer cities than those we compete against, and we feel that we're meeting the needs of our community," said Larry Hanson, City manager. 

    More >>

    The Valdosta City Council unanimously approved a budget increase of more than $8 million Thursday night. It's the biggest increase the city has proposed in more than a decade. "We feel it's a good budget, our taxes are lower than our peer cities than those we compete against, and we feel that we're meeting the needs of our community," said Larry Hanson, City manager. 

    More >>
  • Lowndes Co. officials focus on 'building a kit' during hurricane season

    Lowndes Co. officials focus on 'building a kit' during hurricane season

    Thursday, June 22 2017 6:45 PM EDT2017-06-22 22:45:17 GMT
    (Source:WALB)(Source:WALB)

    Now that hurricane season is underway, Lowndes county officials want to make sure people are prepared.  Each week they're focusing on a different topic and this week is on the importance of building an emergency kit. 

    More >>

    Now that hurricane season is underway, Lowndes county officials want to make sure people are prepared.  Each week they're focusing on a different topic and this week is on the importance of building an emergency kit. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly