With a large-scale construction boom underway in Kentucky, electricians are in such demand that the Congleton-Hacker Company of Louisville had to import them from Knoxville and Memphis to complete the $120 million expansion and renovation of the Commonwealth Stadium at the University of Kentucky according to a 2015 article in the Lane Report.
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In fact, Kentucky has so many large construction projects underway that it won an award from Site Selection magazine in 2014. In addition, the trade organization Builder’s Exchange of Kentucky expects more than 3,100 active commercial projects for 2015—the most in the organization’s history.
A number of factors contribute to Kentucky’s thriving construction industry. The automobile industry is one. The Kentucky Automotive Industry Association commissioned a study from the University of Louisville that revealed that the state’s automotive industry announced $5 billion in facilities investments over the past five years.
In addition, the UPS and DHL global air hubs fuel construction activity in Kentucky as they expand their facilities. Investment in higher education results in very large construction projects. As of mid-2015, there were $1.8 billion of construction projects announced or underway at the University of Kentucky campus. Eastern Kentucky University started a $64 million project for its new science building, while Northern Kentucky University broke ground for its new $97 million Health Innovation Center.
New housing starts are at high levels in Kentucky, too. An economist for the National Homebuilder’s Association reported that Kentucky will construct so much new housing in 2016 that it will be a 20% increase over the number of new houses built in 2014.
A survey of Kentucky’s contractors by the Associated General Contractors of America confirmed the shortage of skilled craft workers in the Commonwealth. More than 60% of the firms surveyed expect it to be difficult to find such employees in 2016.
Salaries for Residential Electricians Throughout Kentucky
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics provides the range of salaries earned by electricians in Kentucky’s major cities and rural areas. Highly skilled master electricians can expect to earn salaries at the highest end of these ranges (2015):
Salaries for Specialty Electricians in the Major Cities of Kentucky
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics provides salaries for a number of different types of specialized electricians that work in the three largest urban areas of Kentucky (2015). Those with the most education and experience tend to earn salaries at the upper end of the ranges shown here:
Electrical Power-Line Installers and Repairers:
- Elizabethtown-Fort Knox: $73,480 – $92,500
- Lexington-Fayette: $56,430 – $77,750
- Louisville/Jefferson County: $55,160 – $75,480
Electrical and Electronics Repairers Specializing in Commercial and Industrial Equipment:
- Lexington-Fayette: $46,090 – $59,370
- Louisville/Jefferson County: $52,980 – $72,040
- Owensboro: $67.660 – $76,900
Electrical and Electronics Repairers Specializing in Powerhouse, Substation, and Relay:
- Lexington-Fayette: $57,200 – $76,610
- Louisville/Jefferson County: $63,640 – $76,420
Electronic Home Entertainment Equipment Installers and Repairers:
- Louisville/Jefferson County: $37,100 – $69,380
Security and Fire Alarm Systems Installers:
- Lexington-Fayette: $36,940 – $51,190
- Louisville/Jefferson County: $41,470 – $55,290
The statewide average for electricians in these specialized roles is shown in the table below:
Salaries for Electrician Apprentices in Urban and Rural Kentucky
Electrician apprentices in rural South Central Kentucky earned the highest average salary of electrician apprentices in any rural area in the country in 2015 according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. This agency provides salary data for the occupational classification for “Electrician’s Helpers” throughout Kentucky. The information shown here represents the wages earned during an electrical apprenticeship; 2015: