Gov. Beshear: ‘Collaborative Blueprint’ Builds on Kentucky’s Record Economic Momentum

Blueprint for economic developers brings together statewide partners to position commonwealth for further growth in the years ahead


FRANKFORT, Ky. (Feb. 27, 2024) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear announced the Collaborative Blueprint created by and for Kentucky’s Economic Developers, a statewide initiative led by Team Kentucky with input and support from partners across the commonwealth, is now publicly available. The blueprint is the result of an ongoing effort to bring together economic developers and other stakeholders from around the state to determine the best path forward for Kentucky as state, regional and local leaders look to build on the best period for economic growth in the commonwealth’s history.

“There is no denying the incredible economic success we have had over the past four years, with the most private-sector investment of any administration and several of the largest job-creation projects on record,” Gov. Beshear said. “But we recognize there is still so much more we can achieve as a state, and the Collaborative Blueprint will help us navigate our future. We at Team Kentucky know what we can accomplish, and we will continue to work together to ensure we get there.”

With Gov. Beshear’s support, the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development partnered with the Kentucky Association for Economic Development (KAED) and engaged consulting firm McKinsey & Co. to develop a blueprint that economic developers and their stakeholders could follow to spur growth in Kentucky over the next five years.

The Collaborative Blueprint was developed following outreach conducted by Team Kentucky throughout the past year, including surveys, interviews and virtual workshops with partners statewide as well as five regional in-person and cross-functional workshops located throughout the commonwealth.

The blueprint highlights the various ways economic developers will play a leading role in identifying and delivering on specific opportunities, such as strategies around site development, incentives and priorities for Kentucky’s unique but interconnected communities. It also emphasizes priority sectors and enablers that will help realize growth within those sectors. The priorities reflect how Kentucky’s diverse communities can contribute and collaborate to ensure the commonwealth furthers recent success and generates even more economic growth statewide.

Priority sectors include automotive; manufacturing; natural assets; business, financial and professional services and investing in high-potential opportunities. Areas defined as priority enablers are competitive products; workforce; entrepreneurism and innovation; infrastructure and placemaking.

Cabinet for Economic Development Secretary Jeff Noel said these categories set the foundation to capitalize on the record economic success of this administration: “These priority areas are essential to help guide our decision-making as economic developers as we look to take that next step and move the commonwealth forward,” he said. “Not every priority will be a perfect fit for every community, because every community has its own goals, challenges and advantages. That diversity is what makes Kentucky so special, but it is also why this blueprint is so important, so we can align on a vision for what success looks like and to help shape an even greater future for all Kentuckians.”

Haley McCoy, president and CEO of KAED, said the effort highlights the spirit and collaboration that has created the current economic momentum: “KAED is appreciative to partner in this critical initiative for Kentucky. A blueprint that is both by and for economic developers embodies what our organization is about,” she said. “Our commonwealth is blessed with innovative thinkers, regional diversity in resources and core competencies, as well as a collaborative spirit that has led to stronger partnerships and communication throughout this process. We look forward to using this good work to carry our economic development success well into the future.”

Team Kentucky’s commitment to the state’s economic future builds on the best four-year period for economic growth in state history.

Since the beginning of his administration, Gov. Beshear has announced more than 1,000 private-sector new-location and expansion projects totaling over $30 billion in announced investments, creating nearly 52,000 jobs. This is the highest investment figure secured during the tenure of any governor in the commonwealth’s history.

The robust job creation has been accompanied by rising wages across the commonwealth. The average incentivized hourly wage in 2022 and 2023 topped $26 in consecutive years for the first time.

Gov. Beshear has announced some of the largest economic development projects in state history, which have solidified Kentucky as the electric vehicle battery production capital of the United States: Ford Motor Co. and SK On’s transformative $5.8 billion, 5,000-job BlueOval SK Battery Park in Hardin County; AESC’s $2 billion, 2,000-job gigafactory project in Warren County; Toyota’s $1.3 billion investment in Scott County; and INFAC North America’s $53 million investment in Taylor County, among others.

The Governor’s administration also secured the largest General Fund budget surplus and Rainy Day Fund, as well as the most jobs filled in state history. Last year, Kentucky set the record for the longest period with the lowest unemployment rates in state history.

Kentucky also secured rating increases from major credit rating agencies Fitch Ratings and S&P Global Ratings, and Moody’s Investors Service upgraded Kentucky’s credit outlook from stable to positive.

Site Selection magazine placed Kentucky first in the South Central region and top 5 nationally in its 2023 Prosperity Cup ranking, which recognizes state-level economic development agencies for their success in landing capital investment projects.

Gov. Beshear announced a “Supply Kentucky” initiative with the goal of boosting job growth, reducing costs and providing more security in the supply chains of our Kentucky companies.

To view the Collaborative Blueprint created by and for Kentucky’s Economic Developers, visit

Information on Kentucky’s economic development efforts and programs is available at Fans of the Cabinet for Economic Development can also join the discussion at, on Twitter @CEDkygov, Instagram @CEDkygov and LinkedIn.