Steve Beshear

Broadband in jeopardy without state funding, companies warn

Private companies building a high-speed internet network in Kentucky warned Thursday that the project will fall apart if state lawmakers don't pay for it, potentially forcing taxpayers to pay back hundreds of millions of dollars in loans.

State lawmakers sent a two-year operating budget to Republican Gov. Matt Bevin's desk last week without the roughly $60 million needed to keep the project going for the next two years. The budget bill does give Bevin the authority to make payments from the state's savings account or a surplus, if there is one. That alarmed the state's private sector partners, who say the uncertainty worries them the state won't be able to make its contractually...