A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

KentuckyWired finalizes $100 million bond sale to fund settlement, project costs for fiber optic network

The Kentucky Communication Network Authority (KCNA), the agency responsible for overseeing the Commonwealth’s KentuckyWired fiber optic cable network project, finalized a bond sale of $102,090,000 last week. The City of Williamsburg issued the bonds for the KentuckyWired Infrastructure Company. The Series 2019 municipal bonds were purchased by Morgan Stanley. The majority of the proceeds — $93...

KentuckyWired achieves another milestone with installation of final local telecommunications hut

The state’s KentuckyWired project reached another milestone, placing the last of 20 local telecommunications huts across the state. The final hut was installed in Henderson, near U.S. Highway 41 and the Henderson bypass on June 27. The huts, housing communications equipment vital to the KentuckyWired fiber optic network, are located primarily at state police posts and Kentucky Community and Technical...

First phase of KentuckyWired project completed, includes Louisville, Lexington, Northern Kentucky

Gov. Matt Bevin and Congressman Hal Rogers have announced a major milestone achievement for the Commonwealth’s high-speed fiber optic network – KentuckyWired. The first portion of the network, known as Ring 1A, is now complete and includes Louisville, Lexington and Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky. Additionally, a key backbone segment from Lexington to Somerset has also been completed, allowing for...

Rural Blog: Ky’s broadband boondoggle a cautionary tale; Bevin’s aide undercutting him siding with AT&T

(Click for larger image) Five years ago, the Democratic governor of Kentucky, who couldn’t run for re-election, and a powerful Republican congressman struck a deal with private investors to get high-speed internet to the state’s rural areas, especially the congressman’s depressed district. The KentuckyWired system is only one-third built, and now the governor is a Republican whose...

KentuckyWired construction utilizing Kentuckians as 80 percent of work performed by local labor

When the KentuckyWired broadband project began building its 3,350-mile network of high-speed fiber optic cable, the Commonwealth ensured that at least 60 percent of work-hours used for construction would be from local labor, and included that requirement in the state’s contract with its builder. Three years into the project that promise has not only been kept, but exceeded. The latest report from...

KentuckyWired reaches 1,000 miles of planned 3,000-mile high-speed fiber optic cable network

KentuckyWired, a broadband project installing high-speed fiber optic cable in every county, has now completed over 1,000 miles of its planned 3,000-mile network, with 1,090 miles of fiber either on aerial poles or in underground conduit, and another 500 miles ready for fiber deployment in the coming weeks. The head of the state agency overseeing the project says it is an important milestone. “Obtaining...

Statewide KentuckyWired broadband project will be ‘tremendous benefit’ for Kentucky’s military veterans

The Commonwealth’s broadband project, KentuckyWired, is currently installing high-speed fiber optic cable in all 120 counties, connecting state government offices, universities, community colleges, state police posts, and many other community facilities. Among these are two of the state’s veterans centers — Eastern Kentucky Veterans Center in Hazard and Western Kentucky Veterans Center in Hanson. The...

Kentucky Auditor: Taxpayers on hook for almost $1.5 billion over 30 years for KentuckyWired

A special examination by Kentucky Auditor Mike Harmon’s office of KentuckyWired, the statewide broadband project announced in 2014, finds that taxpayers will be on the hook for almost $1.5 billion over 30 years for the project. That is among nine findings detailed in Harmon’s nine-month examination of the Kentucky Communications Network Authority (KCNA) and KentuckyWired. Harmon’s report will...

Owensboro Municipal Utility to lease portion of broadband network to Kentucky Wired

The Kentucky Communications Network Authority (KCNA) and Owensboro Municipal Utilities (OMU) have reached an agreement to lease a portion of OMU’s broadband network to Kentucky Wired. KentuckyWired is a Commonwealth project constructing 3,000 miles of fiber optic cable into all 120 Kentucky counties. The agreement allows OMU’s fiber network to serve as part of the Kentucky Wired network, thus...

MuniNet to build KentuckyWired fiber optic network in Caldwell, Muhlenberg and Hopkins counties

MuniNet Fiber Agency has entered into an agreement with the Commonwealth of Kentucky to build part of its KentuckyWired fiber optic cable project in Caldwell, Muhlenberg and Hopkins counties. MuniNet will construct approximately 66 miles of the 3,400-mile ultra-high speed cable network that will extend into every county in the Commonwealth. MuniNet chief technology officer Brent Shelton says the partnership...

Brandenburg Telephone Company to build 40-mile section of KentuckyWired fiber optic cable project

Brandenburg Telephone Company (BTC) has entered into an agreement with the Commonwealth of Kentucky to build part of its KentuckyWired fiber optic cable project in Meade and Breckinridge counties. BTC will construct approximately 40 miles of the 3,400-mile ultra-high speed network that will extend into every county in the Commonwealth. “I cannot stress how significant this partnership will be for...

Eastern Kentucky business succeeding globally through high speed broadband connectivity

If the internet goes down at Troll and Toad in Corbin, KY, idle employees count the minutes until it is back up again. “When we originally moved into the building, we had times when the cable would be out for the day,” said Jonathan Huston, President of Troll and Toad. “Do you know what that means? We send our employees home. We are not able to ship packages, we are not able to process–everything’s...

Bevin, Rogers say ‘significant progress’ has been made on statewide broadband network project

Gov. Matt Bevin and U.S. Congressman Hal Rogers said Friday the state’s broadband initiative, KentuckyWired, is moving forward with the initial build out in eastern Kentucky followed by the rest of the state. Since announced last year, significant progress has been made in engineering, site design and surveys along with strategic partnership agreements and more, the two said during a news conference...

Commentary: KentuckyWired part of the Obama administration’s war on the Internet

By Drew Johnson Special to KyForward The Bluegrass State is already reeling from the Obama administration’s war on coal. Now the people of the Commonwealth are preparing to feel the sting of ObamaNet, the administration’s attempt to seize control of the Internet. Just as President Obama used the Environmental Protection Agency as a means to shutter most coal-fired power plants in the U.S. – and...

Commentary: Reliable, high-speed internet coming to every county of the Commonwealth

By Gov. Steve Beshear and Congressman Hal Rogers Special to KyForward   Kentucky is embarking on one of the biggest infrastructure projects in more than 50 years – developing a robust, reliable, fiber “backbone” infrastructure that will bring high-speed Internet connectivity to every county of the Commonwealth.   The network, called KentuckyWired or the I-Way in Eastern Kentucky, will...

Officials celebrate state broadband project; government facilities among first to benefit

      To celebrate the construction of the statewide KentuckyWired I-Way broadband network, Gov. Steve Beshear, Congressman Hal Rogers, state and local officials, and citizens gathered at Hazard Community and Technical College yesterday to learn more about the project and its future.   The broadband project will begin in Eastern Kentucky and, over the next three years, will spread...

Executive order creates governing board to manage KentuckyWired broadband network

  Gov. Steve Beshear has signed an executive order creating the Kentucky Communications Network Authority and its governing board to manage the KentuckyWired open-access broadband network.   The project is designed to create high-speed Internet connectivity throughout Kentucky. According to a press release from the governor’s office, more than 3,000 miles of fiber infrastructure, often...