Gov. Kemp hopeful as Savannah industries continue economic recovery

Gov. Kemp hopeful as Savannah industries continue economic recovery

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - It was a full day for Georgia’s Governor Brian Kemp in the Hostess City.

His hands were full signing a number of bills sponsored by local legislators. Some having direct relation to the pandemic, others focusing on business and more.

The governor started his day with a room full of Georgia school leaders and said he was impressed with the resiliency in the Peach State but said specifically he’s impressed with how Savannah has returned.

“It’s just awesome how good it’s doing. I was really surprised last night when a group of hotel owners I was with was talking about just how good it’s been recently and same for many of our restaurants around here and that’s good for our tax base, it’s good for education and it’s good for our state as a whole,” Gov. Kemp said.

The governor during his visit signed several bills, some having to do directly with the COVID-19 pandemic regarding pharmacies and masking, but also tourism and businesses. He said this time last year they couldn’t imagine the funding they have in place now adding that we saw a drop in the unemployment rate, too.

“We are not taking our foot off the gas, but literally some of the hardest hit sectors of our economy were in hospitality, travel, tourism, our restaurateurs, hoteliers and others and we are starting to see that life come back right here in places like Savannah and really all throughout Coastal Georgia and slowly but surely it’s coming back to the capital city of Atlanta as well, so I feel good about where we are, we’ve got to stay after it,” Gov. Kemp said.

One way to do that is with COVID vaccinations. According to the state’s vaccine dashboard, 33 percent of the state has had at least one dose of the vaccine, but demand is dying down. Gov. Kemp says it’s safe and effective and the state is working to adjust their vaccine plan.

“We have seen the demand decline at our mass vaccination sites, we’re going to keep them up for a little while longer, but we’re also changing our strategy, we’re going to neighborhoods, we’re going to churches, we’re encouraging the local health departments to reach out and do those as well I’ve talked to the school superintendents today about that, so we’ve just got to keep our foot on the gas,” he said.

Savannah does have several mass vaccination sites like the one at the Savannah Civic Center. They will be offering walk-in appointment Thursday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Leaders say because of a decrease in demand, starting next week they will offer vaccinations at the Savannah Civic Center just one day a week.

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