Transportation Infrastructure:

Flexibility in Federal-Aid Funding Essential to Highway Program Restructuring

T-RCED-91-4: Published: Dec 10, 1990. Publicly Released: Dec 10, 1990.

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GAO discussed several national and state-specific issues related to the reauthorization of the federal-aid highway program, focusing on: (1) the highway system's and bridge network's deterioration and congestion; (2) states' use of existing federal-aid highway program flexibilities and other funding mechanisms; and (3) possible options for restructuring the federal-aid highway program. GAO noted that: (1) over 40 percent of the interstate system was in fair or poor condition and about 53 percent of urban interstate travel occurred under congested conditions; (2) states transferred funds among federal-aid highway programs and used their own funds to maintain program continuity and to overcome misalignment between federal funding levels and state needs; (3) under a demonstration program, states pooled funds to better target federal funds; and (4) toll financing could be an effective revenue source for federal-aid highways.

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