The new state budget approved by Georgia lawmakers includes an additional $35 million for deepening the busy shipping channel to the Port of Savannah, a project that was supposed to be aided with federal funds that were surprisingly left out of President Obama's budget proposal.
The fiscal 2015 state budget the Legislature sent to the governor last Tuesday brings the total funding Georgia has set aside for the Savannah harbor expansion to $266 million.
That should be enough to cover Georgia's 40 percent of the $652 million project, which would deepen 30 miles of the Savannah River between the port and the Atlantic Ocean to make room for giant cargo ships.
The Georgia Ports Authority is pushing for the Army Corps of Engineers to begin dredging this year, but progress has stalled in Washington. The White House says a water projects bill stuck in Congress must pass before the harbor deepening can begin.
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