Thursday, March 24, 2016

Senate passes bill to authorize public-private partnerships

(AP) — The Kentucky Senate has passed a bill that would authorize use of public-private partnerships for mega-dollar transportation work and other projects.

The 29-9 Senate vote on Thursday sends the bill back to the state House. Rep. Leslie Combs, the bill's lead sponsor, says she'll urge the House to accept Senate changes and send the measure to Gov. Matt Bevin.

Combs has promoted the so-called "P-3" legislation for several years.

The bill would sanction ventures partnering state and local governments with private sources. As part of the arrangements, a private company could construct, finance or operate a public facility.

Supporters say it's an option to pay for big-ticket projects that the state or local governments can't afford.

Opponents warn it would transfer basic government responsibilities to private sources.