Both parties speak out against president's budget - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Both parties speak out against president's budget

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Some lawmakers are ready to vote against President Obama's proposed budget, which does not include the money needed to deepen the Savannnah Harbor.  

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal says he is moving forward with the ports project anyway.

The state has already set aside about $230 million for this project. Georgia was going to pay 40 percent of the cost to deepen the port and the federal government was going to pay the rest.  

Even though the president did not allocate the funding needed for the dredging, Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) said there is still hope.

The future of the project depends on the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA). This act is waiting to be passed but it's a water resource law that allows the Army Corp of Engineers to carry out this type of project.

Sen. Chambliss said he is confident the act will pass in the next couple of weeks but there will still be delays in this project.

"All new starts have to be funded in the budget, and we are not going to be able to start using federal money in this project," said Sen. Chambliss. "But with Gov. Deal's commitment we can start the project with state funds."

A Democratic candidate running for Sen. Chambliss' seat is also speaking out. Michelle Nunn said this goes beyond party lines because Democrats and Republicans alike are counting on this project.

"It was obviously very disappointing. We've had real bipartisan support for the Savannah Harbor deepening," said Nunn.

Nunn is jumping into this the Senate race with disappointment from her own party.  Just last fall, Vice President Joe Biden came to Savannah making promises.

Biden assured Savannah and the rest of the nation that this dredging project was at the top of the agenda.

Biden recently announced his support for Nunn's candidacy, but Nunn said she disagrees with how issues are being handled by people in Washington, D.C.

"I absolutely believe that the administration should support and move forward and stand up to what they have already committed to," said Nunn.

"We have been led to the alter and all of a sudden the bride has walked away and thrown up her hands and said we are just not going to complete this," said Sen. Chambliss.  

Both Sen. Chambliss and Nunn said they are pleased with Gov. Deal's decision to move forward with this project using state dollars, but federal funding will probably not be allocated until next year.

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