LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Editor's Note: the above video is related to Gov. Andy Beshear's budget plan regarding Kentucky's infrastructure and tourism.
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) announced Friday the launch of a $27 billion program to repair and upgrade roughly 15,000 highway bridges across the country, including Kentucky.
The historic program - called the Bridge Replacement, Rehabilitation, Preservation Protection, and Construction Program (Bridge formula Program) - is the single largest dedicated bridge investment since the construction of the interstate highway system, according to the DOT. It will provide $26.5 billion to states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico over five years and $825 million for Tribal transportation facilities.
Through the program, Kentucky will receive a total of $438.2 million to help improve more than 1,000 bridges in poor condition across the state. In fiscal year 2022 alone, Kentucky will receive $87.7 million.
Congressman John Yarmuth stated in a press release that the investment is "an enormous win for the people of Kentucky."
He went on to say that this record-breaking investment will help make "critically needed repairs that will not only improve our infrastructure but will also create good jobs here in the Commonwealth."
The Bridge Formula Program funding can be used to replace, rehabilitate, preserve, protect, and construct highway bridges throughout Kentucky, including “off-system” bridges that are not on the federal-aid highway system.
While states normally are required to match federal funding with up to 20% of state or local funding, this program allows federal funds to be used for 100% of the costs of repairing or rehabilitating such locally owned off-system bridges.
It doesn't, however, fund major bridge projects like the Brent Spence Bridge. Funding for those projects was included in Gov. Andy Beshear's budget proposal, released Thursday.