Although portions of the Kentucky Wired public-private partnership were supposed to go live in summer of 2016, the completion has been delayed until early 2020. The project has suffered several costly delays due to weather and difficulties securing agreements with property owners.
The Kentucky Wired network is supposed to stretch more than 3,000 miles to every county in the state. The network is expected to be be used to provide internet to state government buildings across Kentucky; additionally local companies will be able to lease part of the network to provide broadband service to communities.
The US$365 million project has been mostly financed with a bond taken out by private investors led by Macquarie Capital and backed using the state’s credit rating. In return, Kentucky agreed to pay the companies availability payments starting from US$30 million per year and escalating to nearly US$57 million in 2045. In addition, an US$88 million payment to the private partners for the delays and a renegotiation of the initial contract is being negotiated by Kentucky Wired officials.