Georgia Politics, Campaigns & Elections for October 31, 2012

Y’all helped save these four puppies this week, with more than $400 in contributions to Angels Among Us Rescue earmarked for them.

Braelynn, Bria, Brisa and Briley are Golden Doodle/Shepherd mix puppies who are now safe out of the shelter, but seeking foster and permanent homes through Angels Among Us. Foster applications and adoption applications are available on Angels’ website.

Duff is a tan-and-white mix of hound dog and whippet, who is about 6 months old, quick to learn, loves to please his humans and gets along with other dogs. He is listed as “URGENT” at Chatham County Animal Shelter.


Nyko is also listed as “URGENT” at Chatham County and is a lab mix less than a year old, who is very friendly, smart, and eager to please his humans. He loves to play and is a fast learner.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns & Elections

Advance voting is still open the rest of this week for next week’s General Election.

Patch.com brings us some stats on Early and Advance voting in Gwinnett County.

  • 995,493 – Number of early votes cast in Georgia as of Saturday.
  • 40,558 – Number of votes cast in Gwinnett County as of Saturday.
  • 22,400 –Total votes cast at the Gwinnett County Elections Office in Lawrenceville in the first week of early voting according to Gwinnett County Communications Director Joe Sorenson.
  • 7,600 – Total number of voters who went through the satellite voting locations throughout Gwinnett County.
  • 4 – The number of satellite locations across Gwinnett County. They are Centerville Community Church in Snellville,  Dacula Activity Building in Dacula, George Pierce Community Center in Suwanee and Lucky Shoals Community Center in Norcross.
  • 45 minutes – Average wait time for voters standing in line outside the Elections Office Monday.
  • 1 hour 30 minutes – The longest wait time of the day early Monday morning. Sorenson says he expects the wait times to grow as the week goes on.

This weekend, we will be “falling back” and resetting our clocks for the end of Daylight Saving Time, and Georgia Insurance and Fire Safety Commissioner Ralph Hudgens reminds you to change the batteries in your home and office smoke and carbon dioxide detectors.

“Last year in Georgia there were 72 fatal house fires and 67 of them didn’t have a working smoke alarms,” Hudgens said.  “If you have a smoke alarm, make sure it’s in working order.  Changing the battery at least once every year and cleaning dust from the device are easy ways to ensure continued protection of your family and your property.  Having a working smoke alarm doubles the chances you will survive a fire in your home.”
Daylight saving time ends Sunday, November 4th at 2:00 a.m., when clocks are set back one hour.

We were about to change all the batteries in our smoke and CO2 detectors because somewhere in the house, one of the blamed things is chirping just often enough to drive me insane while I work from home, but not often enough to figure out which one it is.

Commissioner Hudgens is a great public servant for Georgia and we don’t get to say that often enough here because he seems to keep a pretty low profile in the media.  Not what we’ve come to expect from that office.

Twenty members of the Georgia National Guard were sent with their CH-47F Chinook helicopters to assist in storm relief.

The two helicopters are to be used primarily to move groups of people in and out of areas. They each can carry at least 33 seated passengers, as well as heavy equipment such as bulldozers. Additionally, they each left Savannah with a 2,500-gallon water bucket for firefighting and a vehicle.

Leading the two crews are Chief Warrant Officers Timothy Ladson, 47, and Lance Brennan, 38, full-time pilots who said they are well-trained and prepared for whatever they may encounter. The unit served twice in Afghanistan and fought fires in the Okefenokee Swamp.

“Everybody is excited; everybody wants to go and help out,” said Ladson, a Groves High School and Savannah State University graduate, before deploying.

“Sometimes people hesitate a little bit to go to Afghanistan. But on a mission like this, when you’re going to help people on our home soil, there’s no hesitation whatsoever.”

Like many of the crew members, Brennan, a Liberty County native, has seen the around-the-clock news coverage of communities devastated by the large storm that made landfall in the northeast on Monday, leaving flooding, power failures and death in its wake.

“I’m expecting to see a lot of debris and a lot of water,” Brennan said.

“I expect the worst but hope for the best. If they send us on up, I hope to see a lot of people already coming back in and taking it upon themselves to not wait for us, but to start the clean-up process and then when we get there, to further assist them in the clean-up and rebuilding.”

By Monday night, U.S. Coast Guard aircrews and helicopters from Savannah and Jacksonville, Fla., had already arrived in Elizabeth City, N.C., to allow for faster response times following the storm’s landfall, the U.S. Coast Guard announced Tuesday.

The Coast Guard Helicopter Interdiction Tactical Squadron, based at Cecil Field in Jacksonville, sent two MH-65 Dolphin helicopters and two pilots. Air Station Savannah deployed a third Dolphin helicopter, four pilots and six crew members.

Air Station Savannah executive officer, Cmdr. David Cooper, headed north as well to coordinate the Coast Guard’s aviation response for the storm.

South Carolina Congressman Joe Wilson joined Republican Lee Anderson in Georgia’s Twelfth District.

Speaking at a press conference at his campaign headquarters following a visit to the Columbia County American Legion, Anderson said that any cuts he approved in Congress would not include the defense budget.

“The main thing we can do is get Mitt Romney in the White House,” Anderson said. “Then, with Joe Wilson’s leadership, we can make sure that our defence is the strongest Defense Department ever. We are totally opposite to what Obama and John Barrow want to do. We want to make the Defense Department stronger.”

When pressed on his opponent Congressman John Barrow’s stand against the looming economic sequestration and the effect it would have on defense spending, Anderson responded that to support the President was, in fact, supporting sequestration.

“He’s right,” Wilson said, “He (Barrow) supports Obama, the leader in the White House, the man who wants to cut our defense department. That’s the difference right there.”

Joe Wilson must be an honorable man, as he is a graduate of Washington & Lee University, one of the finest institutions of higher learning in our nation.

I received word that a bus of volunteers will head to Virginia this weekend to campaign for Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan in that swing state Commonwealth. Maybe they’ll stop briefly in Lexington.

Another FREE trip to a swing state-VIRGINIA.  Jack Smith “the Lion of N. GA” I call him,  is heading up a bus to Virginia to walk neighborhoods for freedom.   I told Jack, a herd of wild horses could not keep me from going on this trip.  Like Mary, Jack has fun trips.

For this side of Atlanta our bus will leave from the Home Depot on Hwy 92, 200 feet off exit 7 off 575.  Park on the far side of the parking lot were the plants are.   (Home Depot is 200 West of exit 7)

Briefly,  it will be  four days, Thursday November 1 to Sunday, November 4. ALL-expenses paid, (transportation, lodging for 3 nights, and ALL meals)

Would you like to go? Would you like to make a difference? Contact Jack Smith,[email protected] or 706-635-3831

Jim Galloway brings us the news that white voters now constitute less than 60% of all registered voters in Georgia for the first time.

White voter registration, which stood at 63 percent in 2008, has dropped to 59 percent of the 5.3 million signed up to cast ballots in this year’s presidential contest. African-American registration stands at 30 percent, just as it did in 2008.

The difference comes from the growing pool of voters who decline to identify themselves by race, or describe themselves as something other than white, black, Asian-Pacific, Hispanic-Latino, or Native American. That group grew from 3.6 percent in 2008 to 8 percent today.

The decline of the white vote in Georgia has been slow but steady. In January 2001, whites made up 72 percent of registered voters; in January 2007, they were 67 percent. Blacks in 2001 made up 26 percent of the electorate, and 27 percent in 2007.

Statistics and political geeks are encouraged to check out the rest of the article, where Jim trots out some additional statistics that will be part of the forces driving Georgia politics in the coming years.

Also yesterday, Galloway noted that Erick Erickson has endorsed the reelection of Democratic State Representative Scott Holcomb (81) on the basis of severe bad judgment by Republican Chris Boedeker.

As the weekend began, Holcomb received this Tweeted endorsement from Erick Erickson of Redstate.com:

“I’m proud to support Democrat Scott Holcomb for re-election in the Georgia State House. Better an honest Democrat than a lying fool.”

Noting the statement by Boedeker’s Republican Primary opponent Carla Roberts, which we published yesterday, Galloway followed up with Roberts on whether that constituted an endorsement of Holcomb. Dr. Roberts replied, “I am not endorsing Rep Scott Holcomb. It would be hard for me to vote for Mr. Boedeker to represent my district and my state. I may have to leave that ballot choice blank on Nov 6, 2012.”

Pro-tip for politics: if the Marietta Daily Journal calls your candidate, you tempt the wrath of Dick Yarbrough if you don’t take the call. Just ask Doug Stoner.

My colleagues Joe Kirby and Bill Kinney reported in Tuesday’s Around Town that current State Sen. Doug Stoner (D-Smyrna) will not return calls from the media.

Let’s let that one soak in a moment. Stoner is fighting for his political life, having been redistricted into a new Sixth District that is heavily Republican and against a formidable opponent, Hunter Hill, of Vinings, who has all the right credentials: Graduate of the U.S. Military Academy, three tours of duty in Afghanistan, two Bronze Stars, bright, articulate and a family man. In my opinion, Stoner would have a tough time with Hill even without all the gerrymandering.

When AT asked why Stoner won’t return calls to the media, Melissa Pike, chair of the Cobb Democratic Party, informed them that the Senate Democratic Caucus is “very, very, very firm that they are going to be united, they’re going to give a consistent response and that consistent response is going to come through Liz Flowers.” Flowers is with the caucus and will return media calls to Stoner by asking what questions will be asked him.

Pike says she wishes the House would do the same thing so “we wouldn’t have 800 answers to the same question, which makes it so easy to pick off our legislators.”

Having been around politics before Pike and Flowers were potty-trained, I will say that is about as dumb a thing as I have ever seen or heard.

If Democrats are so simple-minded they can’t be trusted to answer a question properly from the media — which, by the way, is a pass-through to voters and constituents — then they are not qualified to hold public office.

Assuming Hunter Hill is going to roll Stoner like a cheap cigarette on Nov. 6, Republicans will have a super majority and Democrats will become even more irrelevant. Liz Flowers won’t need to worry about screening calls. Georgia Democrats will be full of sound and fury, signify nothing.

Power can do strange things to good people.

If someone from the Republican Caucus suggests screening your calls and blocking the media from talking to you, tell them to go microchip their body parts. You work for the constituents. Stay in touch with them.

In defense of screening calls for candidates, I note that it’s not unheard of for reporters to call just hours before deadline on a story that nowhere includes the words “breaking news” and a candidate who is, say, preparing for a televised debate, may not feel the same sense of urgency the writer wishes to impart.  It also allows staff to ensure that the candidates has any facts, legislation, etc. available if he or she is going to be asked about it, rather than have to call back after shuffling papers or reviewing the subject of the story. Finally, in down-ballot races, ninety percent of the questions asked by reporters will be the same as have been asked and answered a dozen times. Allow us to send you written answers to these, and the candidate will have more time to answer fully and thoughtfully the specific and unique questions that may be specific to your media outlet.

The Cherokee Board of Elections will address today a complaint that presumptive District Three Commissioner-elect Brian Poole is not qualified to hold the seat.

After meeting in a called, closed-door session for two hours Oct. 24, the Cherokee County Board of Elections emerged to vote to authorize a motion for county Superintendent of Elections Janet Munda to challenge Poole’s qualifications and eligibility to seek and hold office and set a hearing on the matter. The controversy centers around whether Poole can legally hold office under the Georgia Constitution while owing unpaid taxes.

Another complaint issues out of Cherokee County, this one under the Open Meetings Act, alleging that Georgia Charter Educational Foundation, which runs Cherokee Charter Academy, failed to abide by notice requirements for two meetings and entered executive session improperly.

The AJC notes that enforcement of the state’s law against texting while driving appears to be low.

In the two years after a ban on texting while driving in Georgia took effect on July 1, 2010, state records reveal that fewer than 50 people a month have been convicted of the offense, for a total of 1,281 convictions as of Sept. 17. That’s a small fraction of the 22,500 people convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs during the same time frame. The Department of Driver Services (DDS) only tracks convictions, not the number of citations issued, DDS spokeswoman Susan Sports said.

Many law enforcement officers say the law is difficult to enforce. State troopers have only issued an average of 11 citations a month since the law took effect.

Lt. Les Wilburn, assistant troop commander for the Georgia State Patrol, said troopers have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that someone was texting at the wheel, and not merely dialing a number or talking. Most drivers simply stash their phone when a cop is in sight, he said.

To effectively prevent texting while driving, I recommend installation of something called a “spouse” in the passenger seat of your car. An alternative to that device is a “parent” or “tattletale sibling who receive money for reporting older brother/sister.”

Governor Nathan Deal will recommend that the state pony up another $40-50 million dollars toward the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project in next year’s budget.

Last week the federal government gave final regulatory approval to deepen the river to 47 feet, from its current 42 feet, at a cost of $652 million.

Georgia has already put up $181 million for its cost-share portion of the deepening tab, including $47 million last year. Deal, during a brief interview following the annual State of the Ports luncheon at the Marriott Marquis in downtown Atlanta, said he’ll probably request a similar amount from the General Assembly come January.

“We haven’t finalized our figure yet,” the governor said, “but it’s safe to say we’ll be in keeping with what we’ve given in years past.”

Savannah is the nation’s fourth busiest container port and moved a record 3 million containers the last fiscal year. Nearly 100,000 jobs in metro Atlanta alone are directly tied to the distribution of goods that come through Savannah and the port at Brunswick.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers issued a final “record of decision” last Friday allowing 32 miles of Savannah river and harbor to be deepened so ever-larger container ships can ply the waterway. Foltz called the decision “really great news for Georgia and anyone in the Southeast who uses our port for commerce.”

Storm-related port closures on the East Coast are affecting the Port of Savannah.

With Hurricane Sandy closing major deepwater ports from Virginia to New York, a domino effect has delays stretching up and down the coast and into the nation’s heartland.

“This storm has definitely disrupted shipping along the Eastern Seaboard,” said Curtis Foltz, executive director of the Georgia Ports Authority.

“Already, we’ve had a number of vessels that were scheduled to be in port by today either delayed or rerouted,” he said. “Ultimately, this is going to affect trade — unfortunately in the middle of peak retail season.”

The northeastern U.S. ports supply 170 million U.S. and Canadian customers with cargo goods. Disruption to these ports is also expected to have a significant impact on supplies like food and oil to the region.

CSX Corp. and Norfolk Southern Corp., the two main Eastern railroads, are telling customers to expect at least three days of traffic delays in the affected areas. For truckers, travel in the region will remain difficult, though some road restrictions are being eased as the storm passes through.

I’ll be in Savannah in December and would like to hear any recommendations for good bird-watching or train-watching in the area. Also, nominations for best seafood will be accepted, and a couple places may be reviewed.

Speaking of birds, Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds plays at the Strand Theater on the Marietta Square on Friday night, November 2d at 8 PM. Vertigo plays tonight at 9 PM and I may sneak out for the showing. Psycho and North by Northwest play next month. November is also Hitchcock month at the Plaza Theater in midtown Atlanta, with showings of Rope, Strangers on a Train, Vertigo and The Birds. I’m going to try to see as many as I can.

Georgia Ports support 350,000 jobs

Via press release from Gov. Deal’s office:

 

UGA study: Georgia ports support more than 350,000 jobs

One in 12 Peach State jobs – in all regions – related to Savannah, Brunswick

 

Gov. Nathan Deal today announced the release of the study “The Economic Impact of Georgia’s Deepwater Ports” by the Selig Center for Economic Growth at UGA’s Terry College of Business. According to the fiscal year 2011 study, Georgia’s deepwater ports support 352,146 full- and part-time jobs across the state, up from 295,422 found in a 2009 study. Georgia ports now account for 8.3 percent of total state employment, or one out of 12 jobs.

“The research shows strong employment opportunities – linked directly or indirectly to the ports – exist in each of Georgia’s 159 counties,” said Deal. “The findings are a testament to the ports’ sustaining power to create jobs. Our transportation and logistics industry drives statewide and regional commerce while our deepwater ports generate revenue, create jobs and offer opportunities for growth in every corner of the state through our global transportation network. This puts Georgia even closer to being the No. 1 state to do business.”

Selig Center Director Jeff Humphreys conducted the study, which found statewide FY11 impacts also include:

·         $66.9 billion in sales (9.5 percent of Georgia’s total sales);

·         $32.4 billion in state GDP  (7.8 percent of Georgia’s total GDP);

·         $18.5 billion in income (5.2 percent of Georgia’s total personal income);

·         $4.5 billion in federal taxes;

·         $1.4 billion in state taxes; and

·         $1.1 billion in local taxes.

 

“These economic impacts demonstrate that continued emphasis on imports and exports through Georgia’s deepwater ports translates into jobs, higher incomes, greater production of goods and services and revenue collections for government,” said Humphreys. “Port operations help preserve Georgia’s manufacturing base, support Georgia’s agricultural economy and foster growth of the state’s massive logistics, distribution and warehousing cluster.”

 

The Terry College of Business study showed that the total impact of Georgia’s deepwater ports on the state’s economy was $66.9 billion, or 9.5 percent of Georgia’s output in FY11.

Measured in terms of income, Georgia’s deepwater ports contributed $18.5 billion in personal income to the state in FY2011, which is 5.2 percent of Georgia’s total.

“The results of the Terry College study are very encouraging,” said Curtis Foltz, Georgia Ports Authority executive director. “It is clear from the study that the ports fuel a dynamic economic engine, especially considering the research was done at a time when the national economy marked slow to no growth.”

For the first time, Dr. Humphreys and the Terry College of Business examined the impact of Georgia’s deepwater ports on every county in the state, which revealed new results. In the 10-county Atlanta region, for example, more than 150,000 jobs are port-related. The second largest employment impact is in the Coastal Georgia region, representing six coastal and four inland counties and including the ports of Savannah and Brunswick.

In addition to the Terry College study, the GPA tracks the industry categories for import and export trade by county and economic development region. Below are statistical profiles for Georgia’s seven major metropolitan regions, including the study’s job findings and trade details.

FY 2011 Regional impacts

 

Metro Atlanta

In the Atlanta region, 156,698 jobs are tied to the ports. Of those, 57,625 are in Fulton County, 24,538 in Cobb, 23,193 in Gwinnett and 22,660 in DeKalb. Atlanta area businesses shipped or received almost 165,000 20-foot equivalent container units (TEUs) in FY2011, for more than $8.6 billion in business. Of that, $6.12 billion were in exports. Top exports were poultry ($312.7 million), paper and paper board ($127.4 million) and kaolin clay ($50.28 million). The remainder of the port-related trade, or $2.51 billion, was in imports. Top imports were furniture ($132.4 million), auto and truck tires ($79.3 million) and air conditioners ($153.9 million).

  • Fulton County industries did $4.1 billion in port business. Of that, $3.5 billion were in exports. Top three exports by volume were poultry at 21,743 20-foot equivalent container units (TEUs); kaolin clay, 8,651 TEUs; and paper and paperboard, 5,304 TEUs. The remainder of the port-related trade, or $656.1 million, were in imports. Top three imports by volume were furniture, 6,139 TEUs; general cargo, 1,024 TEUs; and cement and concrete products, 550 TEUs. Top three port customers by volume in Fulton include AJC International, Imerys Clay and Georgia Pacific.
  • Cobb County industries did $935.9 million in port business. Of that, $644.6 million were in exports. Top three exports by volume were paper and paperboard at 6,480 TEUs; poultry at 741 TEUs; and starch and chemicals at 533 TEUs. The remainder of the port-related trade, or $291.3 million, was in imports. Top three imports by volume were medical equipment and supplies, 508 TEUs; furniture, 421 TEUs; and bags, 338 TEUs. The top three port customers by volume in Cobb include Graphic Packaging International, Bal Shipping Line and USA Shipping.
  • Gwinnett County industries did $1.56 billion in port business. Of that, $619.7 million were in exports. The top three exports by volume were logs and lumber at 560 TEUs; mixed metal scrap, 288 TEUs; and paper and paperboard, 238 TEUs. The remainder of the port-related trade, or $942.2 million, was in imports. Top three imports by volume were air conditioners, 2,707 TEUs; furniture, 1,845 TEUs; and auto parts, 1,440 TEUs. The top three port customers by volume in Gwinnett include Mitsubishi Electric & Electronics; Cheng Shin Rubber Industry and Kia.
  • DeKalb County industries did $533.6 million in port business. Of that, $336 million were in exports. Top three exports by volume were poultry, at 1,862 TEUs; furniture, 550 TEUs; and grocery products, 181 TEUs. The remainder of the port-related trade, or $197.5 million, was in imports. Top three imports by volume were furniture, 1,541 TEUs; medical equipment and supplies, 394 TEUs; and synthetic resins and plastics, 299 TEUs. Top three port customers by volume in DeKalb include Meta Foods, Factory Direct Wholesale and Green Worldwide Shipping.

Coastal Georgia

In the Coastal Georgia region, 55,384 jobs are tied to the ports. Of those, 37,319 are in Chatham County, 4,134 in Liberty County and 3,529 in Glynn County. The region accounted for $1.45 billion in export trade and $1.57 billion in imports, for a total of $3.02 billion in port business.

“Georgia’s ports serve as hubs of diverse economic activity linking waterborne commercial vessels with economic opportunities throughout the state,” said Allen Burns, Coastal Regional Commission executive director. “Our ports generate thousands of family-sustaining jobs which helps enhance the quality of life of all Georgians. Often taken for granted, our ports are deeply rooted in Georgia’s history and will continue to play a major role in the state’s economic future.”

  • Chatham County industries did $1.74 billion in port business. Of that, $375.9 million was in export trade. Top three exports were automobiles ($104.2 million), mixed metal scrap ($54 million), and saccharin and vanillin ($29 million). The remainder of the port-related trade, or $1.37 billion, was in imports. Top three imports were furniture ($225.7 million), chemicals ($84 million), and olive, palm and peanut oil ($67.2 million). The top three port customers by volume in Chatham County include Ikea, Pier 1 Imports and Expeditors International.
  • Glynn County industries did $44.46 million in port business. Of that, $5.24 million were in exports. Top exports were gums ($1.21 million), wood pulp ($702,172) and synthetic resins ($663,965). The remainder of the port-related trade, or $39.21 million, was in imports. Top imports were automobiles ($28.2 million), buses and campers ($2 million) and auto parts ($1.7 million). Top three port customers by volume in Glynn County include Pinova Inc., Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics and Char Griller.

Northeast Georgia

In the Northeast Georgia region, 13,498 jobs are tied to the ports. Of those, 4,180 are in Clarke County, 1,756 in Walton and 1,509 in Newton County. The region accounted for $278.3 million in export trade and $266.2 in imports, for a total of $544.5 in port business.

“Georgia’s ports provide our state, and the Northeast Georgia region, with a tremendous advantage regarding the recruitment of industries and businesses. This is evidenced by the recent decision of Caterpillar to develop a state-of-the-art facility in this area,” said Jim Dove, Northeast Georgia Regional Commission executive director. “Without access to world-class port facilities, the location or expansion of many manufacturing facilities in our region simply would not occur.”

·         Clarke County industries did $172.5 million in port business. Of that, $13.4 million was in export trade. Top exports were fans, blowers and compressors ($5 million); fabrics including raw cotton ($4.22 million) and auto parts ($1.5 million). The remainder of the port-related trade, or $159.1 million, was in imports. Top imports were fabrics including raw cotton ($144.8 million), staple fibers ($2.98 million) and terra cotta ($1.87 million). The top three port customers by volume in Clarke County include SKAPS Industries, Baldor Electric and Eaton.

Central Savannah River Area

In the Central Savannah River Area (CSRA), 18,924 jobs are tied to the ports. Of those, 10,168 are in Richmond County, 3,895 in Washington and 2,380 in Columbia County. CSRA area businesses shipped or received 25,229 20-foot equivalent container units (TEUs). The region’s industries did $2.1 billion in port business. Of that, $1.48 billion was in export trade. Top exports were chemicals ($585.3 million), lamps ($248.2 million) and kaolin clay ($228.8 million). The remainder of the port-related trade, or $614.2 million, was in imports. Top imports were phosphoric-sulfuric acids ($277.1 million), aliphatic hydrocarbons ($142.7 million) and batteries ($24.7 million).

The top three port customers by volume in the region include DSM Chemicals, Thiele Kaolin and Club Car.

  • Richmond County industries did $1.2 billion in port business. Of that, $686.4 billion was in export trade. Top three export commodities by volume were chemicals at 7,495 20-foot equivalent container units (TEUs); plastic film, 154 TEUs; and Bone Ash/Phosphate, 126 TEUs. The remainder of the port-related trade, or $526.1 million, was in imports. Top imports were amino acids, 268 TEUs; auto parts, 258 TEUs; and fabrics, 199 TEUs. The top three port customers by volume in Richmond include DSM Chemical, RBW and Nutrasweet.
  • Columbia County industries did $77.7 million in port business. Of that, $60.2 million was in export trade. Top three exports by volume were automobiles at 905 TEUs; auto parts, 101 TEUs; and metalware, 86 TEUs. The remainder of the port-related trade, or $17.5 million, was in imports. Top three imports by volume were auto parts, 239 TEUs; auto and truck tires, 62 TEUs; and springs, 27 TEUs. The top three port customers by volume in Columbia include Club Car, Uniparts and John Deere.
  • Washington County industries did $720.5 million in port business. Of that, $708.3 million was in export trade. Top three exports by volume were kaolin clay at 9,234 TEUs; bags, 304 TEUs; and pet supplies, 120 TEUs. The remainder of the port-related trade, or $12.2 million, was in imports. Top three imports by volume were sheets/towels/blankets, 174 TEUs; auto parts, 19 TEUs; and bags, 8 TEUs. The top three port customers by volume in Washington County include Thiele Kaolin, Burgess Pigment and Shiraishi Calcium Kaisha.

Middle Georgia

In the Middle Georgia region, 14,627 jobs are tied to the ports. Of those, 7,310 are in Bibb County, 3,583 in Houston and 1,090 in Baldwin County. The region accounted for $178.3 million in export trade and $88.3 million in imports, for a total of $266.7 million in port business.

“This economic impact study clearly demonstrates the level of importance Georgia’s ports occupy in the economic well-being of Middle Georgia,” said Ralph Nix, Middle Georgia Regional Commission executive director. “The number of jobs in the region which are dependent upon the ports’ activity make up a large percentage of the region’s employment.”

·         Bibb County industries did $209.6 million in port business. Of that, $149.8 million was in export trade. Top exports were kaolin clay ($99.9 million), copper and brass wire ($9.2 million) and molds ($8.3 million). The remainder of the port-related trade, or $59.8 million, was in imports. Top imports were zippers ($10.6 million), writing articles ($8.1 million); and fans, blowers and compressors ($7.1 million). The top three port customers by volume in Bibb County include Kamin, YKK and Freudenberg Texbond.

 

River Valley

In the River Valley region, 9,613 jobs are tied to the ports. Of those, 5,607 are in Muscogee County, 762 in Sumter and 700 in Chattahoochee County. The region accounted for $32.3 million in export trade and $96.7 million in imports, for a total of $129.1 million in port business.

“Georgia Ports are a vital link for businesses in the River Valley Region providing an important import/export resource,” said Patti Cullen, River Valley Regional Commission executive director. “The Savannah Port is also crucial for the inland port in Crisp County, which has created dozens of jobs both directly and indirectly and is expected to create many more jobs in the near future. The impact of the Georgia Ports to our region is enormous.”

·         Muscogee County industries did $95 million in port business. Of that, $10.5 million were in exports. Top exports were photo equipment ($8.1 million), odoriferous compounds ($838,159) and office machines ($437,107). The remainder of the port-related trade, or $84.8 million, was in imports. Top imports were batteries ($24.4 million); vanadium, zirconium and miscellaneous ore ($14.7 million) and photo equipment ($6.9 million). Top three port customers by volume in Muscogee include Panasonic, NCR and Masterbuilt Manufacturing.

Southwest Georgia

In the Southwest Georgia region, 9,926 jobs are tied to the ports. Of those, 3,473 are in Dougherty County, 1,321 in Thomas, and 1,115 in Colquitt County. The region accounted for $243.2 million in export trade and $108.1 million in imports, for a total of $351.4 in port business.

·         Dougherty County industries did $263.3 million in port business. Of that, $181.3 million was in export trade. Top exports were pumps ($176.8 million), grocery products ($2 million) and printing machinery ($1.49 million). The remainder of the port-related trade, or $81.9 million, was in imports. Top imports were auto parts ($20.7 million), staple fibers ($9.8 million) and aircraft parts ($8.3 million). The top three port customers by volume in Dougherty County include the defense distribution depot, the U.S. military and Coats & Clark

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