Federal Highway Funding by Program and Type of Roadway, With Related Safety Data

GAO-01-836R: Published: Jul 16, 2001. Publicly Released: Jul 16, 2001.

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The National Association of Counties contends that rural roads do not receive the level of funding needed to make these roads safer. Rural local roads, which account for more than half of the 8.2 million miles of roadways in the United States, had the highest rate of fatalities per vehicle mile traveled of all types of roadways--over six times that of urban interstates. This report reviews federal highway funding on a state-by-state basis for fiscal years 1992 through 2000 by individual federal highway program and type of roadway. GAO found that about 59 percent of all federal highway funds available to states during fiscal years 1992 through 2000 were spent on urban roads; the rest went to rural roads. Although only about 40 percent of all vehicle miles were traveled on rural roads, about 60 percent of the traffic accident fatalities in 1999 took place on rural roads. The four largest federal highway aid programs that provided funding were the Surface Transportation, National Highway System, Interstate Maintenance, and Bridge Replacement Programs.

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