Fixing today’s problems based upon standards existing over a decade ago is nonsensical.
Earlier this week, board members for the South Carolina Ports Authority voted to shut off funding for the Savannah River dredging project until Georgia is “sincere” about cooperating with the State of South Carolina.
I support the decision of the board and Chairman Bill Stern. Bill Stern offers a no-nonsense, well reasoned analysis of what needs to be done to ensure that funds allocated for the development of the Jasper Port by our taxpayers are productive for the taxpayers of the State of South Carolina and Georgia.
Bill Stern’s recent editorial in the State Newspaper points out undisputable flaws in DHEC’s decision to grant Georgia a permit to dredge the Savannah River to a depth of 48 feet, a depth that is insufficient to support today’s global shipping market. Importantly, the four major East Coast ports have already been authorized to take their harbors to a depth of 50 feet, setting a new East Coast Standard.
A new port for Jasper County, provided that the Savannah River is developed to the 50 foot depth standard under development in Miami, Norfolk, New York, and Baltimore means we are competitively positioned, increasing the likelihood of revenue for the State of South Carolina and Georgia.
As our Governor, Nikki Haley would be wise to consider Bill Stern’s position and involve him in future discussion and negotiation . If the Savannah River and Jasper port projects are properly developed, progress will be made for the citizens of the State of South Carolina and Georgia. Investing money to dredge the Savannah River to a depth that does not meet current demand under the present proposal of 48 feet is irresponsible.