ATLANTA – The condition of Georgia’s infrastructure received a decidedly mediocre grade of “C+” Monday in a report released by the Georgia section of the American Society of Civil Engineers.

“This is a wakeup call,” Tim Echols, vice chairman of the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC), said during a news conference at the state Capitol. “We need to get better.”

Georgia ports achieved the highest score – “B+ – among 14 categories the report examined. The conditions of the state’s bridges, freight rail system, energy infrastructure, and schools came in next with “B” grades.

In fact, Georgia scored above the national report card in 12 of the 14 categories the report examined.

But the state of transit in the Peach State rated lowest, receiving a grade of “D.” As many urban policymakers in Georgia have complained for years, the state has historically underinvested in transit, according to the report.

State Rep. Vance Smith, a former commissioner of the Georgia Department of Transportation and former chairman of the House Transportation Committee, praised the “C+” grade the report gave the condition of aviation in Georgia as an improvement.

The General Assembly has stepped up funding of the state’s general aviation airports in recent years, many located in predominantly rural areas. Smith said improvements at those airports are helping attract businesses to Georgia that aren’t interested in having to cope with Atlanta’s traffic congestion.

“That’s economic development for these (small) communities,” he said. “It spreads the economy across our whole state.”

Echols said Georgia’s relatively strong showing in energy infrastructure stems from last spring’s PSC vote approving Georgia Power’s request for 6,600 megawatts in additional electrical generating capacity as well as the completion of the nuclear expansion at Plant Vogtle in May.

“Georgia has extra energy here,” he said.

The condition of drinking water in Georgia received a grade of “C+” on the report, a mediocre showing that was dramatically demonstrated when major water main breaks in the city of Atlanta in late May forced an emergency declaration and disrupted service for five days.

“While there is a lot to be proud of, there is still room for progress, especially for water systems that serve Georgia’s growing population,” said Julie Secrist, who chaired the committee of engineers that prepared the report.

“As more people and businesses move here, these life-sustaining systems need increased funding to grow, improve, and become more resilient to new and ongoing threats.”