SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Gov. Brian Kemp sent out a letter Monday morning to each member of Georgia’s congressional delegation in support of the Georgia Port Authority’s (GPA) newest effort to study further deepening and widening of the Port of Savannah.

Kemp is asking to authorize a study in the Water Resources Development Act of 2024 that will strongly urge the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to effectuate a study solution and utilize any other avenues to complete the work without delay.

With GPA being important to the national supply chain, as well as having more jobs created throughout the state of Georgia, Kemp feels that it is vital to make sure that GPA will continue to accommodate larger vessels that may enter the ports.

The most recently completed dredging for the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project (SHEP) is designed for vessels with an 8,200 TEU capacity.

The estimated return on investment for the project was nearly 5 to 1, which benefits the state of Georgia, as well as each of the respective congressional districts, Kemp said.

The Port of Savannah continues to see increasing demands as carriers serve the national supply chain.

Before the project SHEP was completed, the port began receiving vessels holding more than 16,000 TEUs.

The port started to notice more restricted vessels were calling on Savannah more than ever before.

Due to the lack of available water depth, Kemp wrote that this issue can affect the unprecedented growth and jobs GPA has contributed to the Savannah area.

Leaders from both political parties and across Georgia have provided their voices in support of SHEP.

The governor’s next step is to advocate on behalf of Georgia in Washington, D.C. for the next phase of growth here at the Port of Savannah.