South Central Kentucky Legislators Support Economic Development Growth

Published Thursday, October 8, 2020
Bowling Green, KY., October 8, 2020 – The Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce hosted an event on October 8th to show appreciation for the Regional Development Agency Assistance Program (RDAAP) funding, administered by the Department of Local Government and secured by local legislators. The commitment and support provided by our legislators is a fundamental reason our community is and remains attractive to major companies, like CROWN Cork & Seal.
RDAAP funds are used for, but are not limited to, preparing or acquiring land for industrial sites, along with building and upgrading utility infrastructure. This further prepares communities to be successful and can create a multitude of jobs. Because these funds can be used as a match, it makes grants more accessible for communities like Bowling Green. This provides additional opportunities to leverage funds available at the federal and state level for critical infrastructure projects; projects that create immediate jobs and opportunities for targeted business growth. 
“Economic development funds secured by our legislators have been integral to Bowling Green's continued investments in infrastructure for real estate development. We know that for each real estate development project, which expands our options and capacity, we are making opportunities for targeted businesses to grow here,” said Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Ron Bunch. 
“Securing future investment in real estate and infrastructure through partnership with the Commonwealth is crucial to ensure continuous growth in the region. There is a strong return on investment for these public funds, thanks to our leadership at the State. This program is a good example of transparency in government,” said Warren County Judge-Executive Mike Buchanon.
Warren County and Bowling Green projects that have benefited from the use of RDAAP program funds include infrastructure for development in ITA lots 26 and 27 and the CROWN Cork & Seal Project. Other projects in South Central Kentucky that have benefitted include: the development of pads in Butler County, adding water and sewer lines in Simpson County, adding water, sewer, gas, and street lights in Allen County, and the purchase of more land within Logan County’s Industrial Park.
“These projects have created jobs in Bowling Green and have supported our continued growth. RDAAP funds are truly valuable to our community at a critical time where investing in infrastructure is necessary for expanding and recruiting companies. To remain competitive, we need these continued investments from the Commonwealth,” said Bowling Green Mayor Bruce Wilkerson. 
The Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce would like to personally thank the legislative delegation for their help in securing these funds: Senators Mike Wilson and C.B. Embry, State Representatives Patti Minter, Steve Sheldon, Steve Riley, Jason Petrie, Wilson Stone, Michael Meredith, and Primary Sponsor Bart Rowland. Their support and commitment to economic growth and prosperity are what drives success in our community and we look forward to this ongoing partnership in the future.
About House Bill 114
House Bill 114 (HB114) was originally signed into law in the 2018 Kentucky General Assembly and was led by our local legislative delegation. It has significantly bolstered economic development efforts for the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce, the county, and the regional area that purchases power from the Tennessee Valley Authority. As a publicly-owned utility created by the federal government, the Tennessee Valley Authority is exempt from taxation, but instead makes payments to the Commonwealth of Kentucky. HB114 adjusted the TVA in-lieu-of-tax payment formula to ensure more dollars from utility payments stay in our region for economic development needs, which established these funds as the RDAAP program. HB114 created a framework for distribution and oversight to ensure funds of up to $150,000 are used for job attracting activities. 
About the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce
Incorporated in 1935, the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce is a 5-Star Accredited Chamber by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. As the fourth largest chamber in Kentucky, the Chamber serves as the driving force for South Central Kentucky’s Business Community providing valuable services to over 1,300 partners, advocating a positive business environment and stimulating economic development for the area. With leadership programs, governmental relations projects, educational initiatives, and involvement opportunities, the Chamber aims to support the community and its neighbors, in order to enhance the business climate and continue to grow the region.