With tight budget times Kentucky localities will need to be smart, creative, open minded and innovative to ensure infrastructure projects move forward. One way to accomplish this is usage of Kentucky’s new public-private partnership (P3) law.
Leaders in the Bevin Administration continue to promote the idea of using public-private partnerships to advance some public projects in Kentucky. The latest to speak up was Cabinet for Economic Development Secretary Terry Gill.
In recent weeks, we’ve heard a lot about Kentucky’s growing infrastructure needs and the apparent lack of short-term funding to meet those needs – both at the state and local levels.
President Trump’s proposed budget, released last month, includes an expansion of the Transportation Department’s private activity bond program (“PAB”) which should help projects using public-private partnerships.
President Trump plans to visit Kentucky this week to discuss infrastructure, and there’s no better place to highlight all the elements of the nation’s aging infrastructure than right here in the Bluegrass State. Historically, Kentucky has focused much of its economic development strategy around its location and leveraging the state’s roads, rivers and runways, not to mention low-cost electricity, to attract and retain businesses.
Dozens of firms have expressed interest in the proposed Capital Plaza Tower public-private partnership in Frankfort.
Many county judges, attorneys and law enforcement officials across Kentucky are watching Madison County, where local leaders hope to form a public-private partnership to solve a growing drug problem that plagues many areas. If successful, it would be the state’s first local P3 project since legislation was passed last year governing P3 deals.
That desire to find a better option is why we sought to bring public-private partnerships to Kentucky. In the enduring debate of which can do a job better — government or business — we asked: Why can’t it be both?
The need for major investments in public infrastructure is unquestioned. The 2017 Infrastructure Grade Card says that our nation’s built environment – its public streets and highways, schools and parks, water and sewer facilities – deserves a dismal D+. At this point, we’re an estimated $4.59 trillion behind.
In Kentucky, our schools need an estimated $453 million of capital improvements. More than 4,000 bridges and overpasses – rated as deficient or functionally obsolete – need repair or replacement. And water and sewer systems in communities across the Commonwealth need a staggering $12.44 billion in improvements.
Don Parkinson has become the point man for public-private partnerships for Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration. Parkinson, secretary of the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet, talks about how P3s can support the state’s $13 billion tourism industry.