Home » Site projects in 45 counties go to Round 2 of Kentucky Product Development

Site projects in 45 counties go to Round 2 of Kentucky Product Development

Over $68 million in funding available for projects statewide

FRANKFORT, Ky. — The Governor’s Office announced 46 site and building development projects in 45 counties have moved ahead to the due diligence stage for review in the second round of the Kentucky Product Development Initiative, with $68.8 million available to support the projects to create sites for business and industry growth in the commonwealth.

The Cabinet for Economic Development initiative provides funding for local communities to further investments in site and building upgrades to support future, well-paying jobs and economic growth across Kentucky.

Round one of the program concluded earlier in December 2023, with 53 projects statewide approved for $31.2 million in funding. Including local contributions, these projects are generating over $123 million in investments in Kentucky’s sites and buildings portfolio.

Currently, $68.8 million is available for projects entering the due diligence stage in round two. The projects have been reviewed by a third-party, independent site selection consultant, which evaluated, scored and submitted project recommendations to the Cabinet for Economic Development. Cabinet officials will consider each project and complete the final stage of due diligence for a recommendation of funding approval by the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority in the coming months.

Projects approved for review by the Cabinet for Economic Development are located in 45 counties including: Adair, Bell, Boone, Breckinridge, Boyd, Butler, Caldwell, Campbell, Clark, Clay, Clinton, Edmonson, Floyd, Franklin, Fulton, Garrard, Graves, Green, Harrison, Hickman, Hopkins, Jessamine, Knox, LaRue, Laurel, Logan, Lyon, McCracken, Montgomery, Nelson, Oldham, Ohio, Perry, Pike, Pulaski, Rockcastle, Rowan, Scott, Shelby, Simpson, Todd, Trigg, Wayne, Webster and Woodford.

Communities submitted applications for 69 site and building development projects for consideration in the second round of the program, and over 70% of all Kentucky counties were approved for funding under the pilot program and round one or have advanced for further due diligence under round two. Communities with projects not selected for funding are receiving valuable feedback from a third-party consultant on necessary site improvements and how they can be better positioned for future funding opportunities.

“The Kentucky Product Development Initiative is a crucial effort helping to ensure we have sites available for companies to grow and add new jobs to our already thriving economy,” said Gov. Andy Beshear. “Identifying and developing new sites that are shovel-ready ensures that our local communities have everything they need to land major economic development projects. Congratulations to every community that is now one step closer to approval.”

The initiative is a collaboration between the Cabinet for Economic Development and the Kentucky Association for Economic Development (KAED). It provides state support for potential upgrades to sites and buildings across the commonwealth to ensure Kentucky remains a prime location for growing companies across all industry sectors.

During the 2022 legislative session, Gov. Beshear and the Kentucky General Assembly approved $100 million in funding for the initiative.

The initiative furthers the efforts of the pilot PDI program, which provided nearly $7 million in state funding for 20 site development projects statewide. Companies have announced economic development projects at 10 of the locations funded during the pilot PDI program projecting $4 billion of capital investment and 3,500 new, full-time jobs.

“Kentucky’s local economic developers are tremendous champions for our commonwealth. We are excited to see that over the course of two years, they have assisted Kentucky communities in applying for these funds that well-exceed the $100 million appropriation from the General Assembly,” said Haley McCoy, president and CEO of KAED, which administers the Product Development Initiative.

“Site Selection Group (SSG), the third-party consulting firm that independently evaluates the applications, uses a rigorous scoring methodology to recommend investment in those projects that are best expected to generate an economic return. The lasting impacts of these strategic state investments cannot be measured in 24 months. Appropriations of this kind allow all communities the opportunity to create lasting growth,” McCoy said. “It is impressive to witness the partnership between the executive and legislative branches, non-profits and business entities who are providing a holistic approach to economic development.

KAED works with the legislature, Cabinet for Economic Development and SSG in this process. A team of Kentucky utility partners help KAED pay the cost of independent consulting services to ensure each application receives an objective evaluation and feedback for continuous improvement. The utilities are Atmos Energy, Big Rivers Electric, Duke Energy, Kentucky Power, LG&E and KU, TVA, Touchstone Energy Cooperatives/EKPC and Louisville Water.

Site and building development projects are first evaluated by an independent consultant based upon all facets a prospective company would consider, from workforce availability, access to all infrastructure and detailed information on costs associated with development. In turn, these projects will generate increased economic development opportunities and job creation for Kentucky residents.

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