The 2018 Transportation Enhancements and Alternatives Spending Report is published by the Transportation Alternatives Data Exchange @ Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (TrADE @ RTC). The data-driven report analyzes states' use of federal transportation funding from 1992 through 2018. The 2018 report is a complete update and supersedes all previous editions.
From 1992–2018, Congress apportioned $18.74 billion to the states for TE, TAP and TASA projects. It is important to note that $3.02 billion was lost to rescissions during this period. The TrADE national project database shows that state DOTs have programmed a cumulative total of 35,984 TE/TAP/TASA projects from FYs 1992–2018. (This does not include canceled projects or projects with no federal money.) The Federal-aid project funding cycle is successfully completed when federal dollars are dispersed to the project sponsor. Consequently, the reimbursement rate is the key performance measure for project implementation. The cumulative reimbursement rate for TE/TAP/TASA (FYs 1992–2018) is 92%. However, this year’s reimbursement rates have decreased for TE and TAP and increased for TASA. In FY 2018, the reimbursement rate is 35% for TASA (up from 33.1% in FY 2017), 48% for TAP (down from 57.9% in FY 2017) and 26% for TE (down from 96.8% in FY 2017).
Lessons from FY 2018
With a new federal transportation bill, the FAST Act, implemented beginning in FY 2016, FY 2018 was another year of transition. States continued to spend remaining TE and TAP funds and concurrently began to take advantage of newly available TASA funds. At the same time, in FY 2018, 25 states transferred $197 million in TAP/TASA to the Surface Transportation Program/Block Grant Program and the Highway Safety Improvement Program—which was almost 25.7% of all funds apportioned that year.
The mission of the Transportation Alternatives Data Exchange at the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is to track Transportation Enhancements, Transportation Alternatives Program and Transportation Alternatives Set-Aside implementation. TrADE provides a web-accessible database and annual report on national and state-by-state funding and expenditures. Through TrADE, RTC’s goal is to make Transportation Alternatives the most accountable and transparent transportation funding source in the United States.
Visit http://trade.railstotrails.org to access our data and publications.