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Better Kentucky Plan

Gov. Beshear, through a bipartisan agreement with state legislators, aims to create 14,500 new jobs and help the commonwealth lead in the post-COVID economy. Through the passage of bills at the end of the 2021 legislative session, nearly $1.3 billion in American Rescue Plan Act funds will be used to boost the state's economy by building new schools, delivering clean drinking water and expanding access to broadband.
 


Better Schools

The School Facilities Construction Commission is forging ahead with the distribution of more than $200 million for the construction of schools and educational facility upgrades. 

These projects could generate as many as 1,000 jobs.

  • $127 million in Federal Funds are being allocated to local school district construction projects.
  • $75 million in General Fund dollars will go to build or upgrade vocational school facilities.


Cleaner Water

Team Kentucky is investing in water or sewer-related projects statewide that will improve the quality of life for Kentuckians while boosting the Commonwealth's infrastructure. Administered by the Kentucky Infrastructure Authority, $250 million has been appropriated for water and wastewater grants for the following uses:

  • $150 mi­­llion
    •  Allocated to projects within a county based on county population
  • $50 million
    • Available for customers in rural areas without clean drinking water services
    • Available for utilities under federal consent decree to address stormwater and sanitary sewer system concerns (Lexington, Louisville, Northern KY Sanitation District No. 1, Winchester)
  • $49.9 million
    • $24.9 million to supplement a project grant where the project cost is greater than the county's allocation
    • $25 million for bids higher than estimated project cost

There are 713 public drinking water and wastewater utilities in Kentucky. Once projects are selected this fall, all funds must be obligated by December 31, 2024.

It is estimated that delivering clean drinking water to Kentuckians will create at least 3,800 jobs.

How to Apply

The Call for Projects begins June 1, 2021. Public drinking water and wastewater utilities will coordinate with the Water Resource Coordinator representing Kentucky's 15 Area Development Districts (ADDs) and Area Water Management Councils. The ADD Water Service Coordinator will create a new Project Profile or update an existing Project Profile through the Water Resource Information System (WRIS) online portal. They will select “Cleaner Water Program Grant Funds” as the funding source under the budget tab to indicate interest in funding through the grant. Click here to visit the WRIS Portal. 

Frequently Asked Questions


Better Internet

The COVID-19 pandemic accentuated the need for all Kentucky citizens to have access to high-speed, reliable internet access to stay informed and connected to school, work, family, church, health care and other critical services. As more jobs transitioned to telework and classrooms moved to online learning, households across Kentucky became increasingly reliant on technology dependent on enhanced internet capacity to not only download data, but also to upload and share information, particularly when two or more platforms were simultaneously online.

Under House Bill 320 and House Bill 382, a bipartisan agreement signed into law by Gov. Beshear, Kentucky's Broadband Deployment Fund includes $300 million in state funds earmarked to address the connectivity needs of unserved and underserved communities across the Commonwealth. Combined with at least 50 percent required matching federal investments, a minimum of $600 million will support broadband expansion in Kentucky, creating more than 10,000 direct and indirect jobs. Coupled with the recent broadband speed test, access mapping and the KentuckyWired project, the Commonwealth has the potential to move to the forefront of broadband expansion nationwide.

To meet the most immediate need of those currently unserved populations across the state, the Kentucky Broadband Deployment Fund will prioritize the applications of projects that include areas without current access to broadband or those providing 10 Mbps or less download speeds. 

Expanding broadband in Kentucky is estimated to create 10,000 jobs.

The application for funds and evaluation criteria are currently in development. Check back soon for updates. 

 

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