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Advocacy leader happy with Kentucky General Assembly's approval of transportation funding

Kentuckians for Better Transportation Director Jennifer Kirchner
Kentuckians for Better Transportation
Kentuckians for Better Transportation Director Jennifer Kirchner

The head of Kentucky’s best known transportation advocacy organization is giving high marks to the Kentucky General Assembly for it’s road, rail, air, and bridge investments.

Kentuckians for Better Transportation Executive Director Jennifer Kirchner used the “H” word in describing investments in transportation.

“A historic transportation funding budget for sure. Our modes such as rail and air are seeing investment that they’ve never seen before,” said Kirchner.

Kirchner said $450 million in additional general fund dollars are found in HB 1, beyond the 2-year transportation budget. And these appropriations offset what could have been generated in more taxes.

“It all depends on how you do the math, but you know that’s somewhere around a seven or eight—ten cent gas tax increase,” said Kircher.

And Kirchner noted the two-year strategy gets to a lot of backlogged pavement needs. And Kirchner added millions in aviation dollars benefit around 58 local airports

“And then we also saw our commercial airports, which are hugely important to the economy of Kentucky. We have done zero, at the state level, for them in the past. So, this the first year that our larger commercial airports, which there’s five of them, had gotten money,” said Kirchner.

Kirchner says $18 million will go to Kentucky’s ten riverports to benefit the movement of goods. The KBT leader said safety and economic development were the two primary objectives of funding.

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Stu has been reporting for WEKU for more than 35 years. His primary beat is Lexington/Fayette government.
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