Today, the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed the House Amendment to S. 3021, "America's Water Infrastructure Act of 2018" -- the bicameral agreement to investment in America's ports, inland waterways, locks, dams, flood protection, ecosystem restoration, and other water infrastructure. Of particular note to Georgians and businesses across the southeast, the agreement raises the authorized federal share of funds for the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project from $492 million in 2014 to what will now be nearly $732 million to keep it on time and on track. Without the provision, federal funding for the State of Georgia's top economic priority would be at risk. The bill also preserves protections for Georgia's water supply, including the Seventh District's own Lake Lanier, by keeping Washington politics out of the ongoing tristate water dispute between Georgia, Florida, and Alabama.
House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee member and Seventh District Representative Rob Woodall spoke on the measure prior to its passage today, and has been highly instrumental in the legislation throughout the process.
"Today's overwhelmingly bipartisan vote to invest in America's water infrastructure is the result of a great deal of work, and a great deal of cooperation across the aisle," said Rep. Woodall. "Protecting our water resources while also fulfilling our commitment to the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project (SHEP) has been a top priority of mine since first coming to Congress, and today's success makes me very proud of the work that got us to this point. As Georgians, we are quick to lead by example, and that reality is invaluable in securing the federal partnership we see in this final bill. This is a fantastic bill for Georgia, the entire region, and it's a great bill for America. I look forward to President Trump signing this legislation very soon."
Vocal support of the bill wasn't hard to find beyond the halls of Congress, and included those ranging from local Seventh District business owners to the Georgia Ports Authority expressing appreciation for the committed effort culminating in today's passage of S. 3021.
"As a Georgia based manufacturer, I am excited and grateful that the Georgia Ports Authority projects are progressing to help our state's economic growth and our nation's ability to ship and receive goods faster and with more efficiency," said Lisa Winton, CEO and Co-owner of Winton Machine in Suwanee. "Reduced shipping costs and improved delivery time of our machines are both mission critical to increasing our export business. Thank you to Rep. Woodall, Georgia's Congressional delegation, Governor Deal, and all our leaders for working together to make such tremendous progress on the GPA expansion and capacity projects."
"We continue to appreciate the unwavering commitment by Georgia's Congressional delegation to ensure this critical project has the support and resources it needs to remain on time and on track," added Georgia Ports Authority Chief Administrative Officer Jamie McCurry. "It is a vital part of maintaining our state's economic momentum and creating even more employment opportunities for Georgians, and Rep. Woodall's leadership on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee has been invaluable in getting us to this point today."
Click here for more information on S.3021 or find the full text here.
Congressman Woodall represents the Seventh Congressional District of Georgia , which includes significant portions of Forsyth and Gwinnett counties, and currently serves as Chairman of the Rules Subcommittee on Legislative and Budget Process, as well as serving on the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, and Budget Committee.