Savannah Harbor deepening project will be completed using federal funds

The Savannah Harbor Deepening project is well past the halfway mark. Photo by Georgia Ports Authority
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The $4.8 trillion federal budget President Donald Trump submitted to Congress Monday includes $93.6 million to keep the Savannah Harbor deepening project on track for completion.

If Congress appropriates the money, fiscal 2021 would become the fourth year in a row the $1 billion project receives its full complement of federal funding.

“President Trump continues to make Georgia’s infrastructure projects a top priority,” said U.S. Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga. “After 20 years of attempts to deepen the port five feet to accommodate the larger Post Panamax ships, the Trump administration has [the harbor deepening project] on track for completion.”

“Georgia’s ports are the lifeblood of our local economies, supporting tens of thousands of jobs across the state and ensuring that our hometown products have access to global markets,” added Sen. Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga. “With the inclusion of [this] critical funding … we are closer than ever to delivering this project and all its benefits to Georgia and the entire nation.”

The state of Georgia put in a major portion of the early funding of the harbor project, contributing the state’s full share of $266 million by 2014, while federal funding of the project lagged. The feds started putting up more money after the state’s congressional delegation called on Trump in December 2017 to include the project in his fiscal 2019 budget request.

“The project is now well past the halfway mark thanks to continued support by the administration and the Georgia congressional delegation to see this critical national infrastructure project through to completion,” said Griff Lynch, executive director of the Georgia Ports Authority. “Due to this collective effort, dredging should be completed by the end of next year.”