Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has outlined a budget plan that includes a US$50m investment in Kentucky’s general aviation airports.
The budget plan, named “Our Future is Now”, will source the investment from Kentucky’s General Fund for Major Transportation Infrastructure Projects and is designed to improve key state infrastructure and boost tourism. The plan also assigns US$6m to construct a new terminal building at Barkley Regional Airport in Paducah.
Beshear noted that the state’s recent economic growth, with approximately US$11.2bn in investments and 18,000 new full-time jobs added in 2021, has demonstrated that Kentucky is “a destination for leading global companies”. The budget also makes investments in emerging agritech and life sciences industries, as well as in critical infrastructure needed to improve the state’s roads, bridges, high-speed internet and clean drinking water.
Beshear said, “My budget invests US$50m from the general fund to develop Kentucky’s general aviation airports, plus another US$6m to keep our promise to support the construction of a new terminal building at the Barkley Regional Airport in Paducah.
“We have the responsibility and the resources to meet this moment. To be bold and to leapfrog other states. Not to tread water or punt on third down. With these dollars, my budget targets investments to create and attract the jobs of the future and works to align workforce readiness with business needs to ensure we can fill the high-quality jobs that are coming our way.”
Craig Clymer, McCracken county judge/executive, said, “The proposed US$6m will relieve the city and county from the burden of using our tax revenue to cover this expense. It’s not just McCracken County that benefits. The entire region will be stronger and more vibrant. Our neighbors in Graves and Marshall counties and other nearby communities are one month past a massive tornado. They are building back from near devastation. And as they build their communities back, we will build this new terminal, bringing great prosperity and development into all of West Kentucky.”