SC AG to represent commission in permit fight

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- South Carolina's attorney general has agreed to represent the Savannah River Maritime Commission in its opposition to Georgia's plans to dredge the river channel shared with South Carolina.

A spokesman for Attorney General Alan Wilson said Tuesday he would side with the legislatively created commission. Wilson's decision comes a day after the commission voted unanimously to declare invalid the water quality permit approved by the state Department of Health and Environmental Control.

Commissioners say billions of dollars in port traffic are at stake.

The Army Corps of Engineers sought the permit to dredge about 35 miles from the Atlantic Ocean to the Savannah, Ga., port.

DHEC initially denied the Corps' application in September, citing environmental concerns. Last week, its board approved a compromise with Georgia officials and the Corps.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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