Lawmakers Wary of Cost to Fund Kentucky Broadband Project

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) – A project to bring high-speed internet capability to all of Kentucky’s 120 counties needs more than $100 million to keep it going, but state lawmakers seem wary of paying for it.

Officials with Kentucky Wired made their case Monday to a panel of Kentucky lawmakers who will decide how to spend more than $70 billion in state and federal tax dollars over the next two years. The project needs about $60 million over the next two years to meet its contractual obligations with its private partners. And it needs another $88 million to reimburse companies for their losses during the project’s many delays.

State officials say killing the project could lead to a $500 million loss for the state. Lawmakers discussed the issue Monday but made no decision.