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Sen. Ossoff Secures Commitment from Homeland Security Secretary to Address Shipping Bottlenecks at Port of Savannah

Washington, D.C. –– U.S. Senator Jon Ossoff continued his work to support the Port of Savannah, today securing a major commitment from the Secretary of Homeland Security to expedite a plan to expand the Savannah port’s capacity.

At Sen. Ossoff’s request, the White House is allocating emergency resources to reduce bottlenecks at the port.

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas committed to work with Sen. Ossoff, the Georgia Ports Authority, and the Port of Savannah to rapidly expand capacity at the port and ease shipping bottlenecks.

Sec. Mayorkas previously committed to working with Sen. Ossoff and the Georgia Ports Authority to bolster cybersecurity capabilities at the Port of Savannah.

Click here to watch Sen. Ossoff’s line of questioning:

Sen. Ossoff questions DHS Sec. Mayorkas in Judiciary Committee hearing.

Please find a transcript of the exchange below:

SEN. OSSOFF: “Thank you, Mr. Secretary, I’d like to discuss with you the supply chain bottlenecks, constraints we’re facing at major shipping container ports across the country. As you know, the State of Georgia hosts the Port of Savannah, which is depending upon how you count, the third- or fourth-largest port of its kind of United States. It hosts the largest single-container terminal in United States, and like ports across the country and indeed around the world, we’re seeing significant delays in the processing of inbound shipments and challenges. I want to ask you what steps the Department is taking, as part of a broader Federal response, to ease these bottlenecks at shipping ports?”

SEC. MAYORKAS: “Senator, I’m very well aware of the challenge there. One measure that we have taken operationally is to increase the hours of operation, sometimes at a 24/7 clip to facilitate easing the adverse consequences of the supply chain challenge.”

SEN. OSSOFF: “Thank you, Mr. Secretary. And I was glad that the White House and the Administration accepted my request that approximately $8 million be allocated to allow the Port of Savannah to rapidly scale up its operations, establish some auxiliary shipping container areas, make greater use of inland ports. I’m glad those resources are on the way, and I’d like to ask you for your commitment that the Department of Homeland Security, to the extent it’s involved in those efforts, will move as rapidly as possible to support our efforts to expand capacity at the Port of Savannah.”

SEC. MAYORKAS: “We most certainly will, Senator.”

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