News

U.S. Highway Trust Fund could run out by July

March 26, 2014

The federal Highway Trust Fund could run out of money as early as July, according to a recently updated projection by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

On Oct. 1, the beginning of the current fiscal year, the highway portion of the trust fund had only $1.6 billion in it. It received $9.7 billion from the General Fund, bringing its total up to $10.4 billion, but the account has already been diminished by nearly $3.3 billion since then.

The mass transit portion of the trust fund began the fiscal year with $2.5 billion, and received a transfer from the General Fund which brought its balance up to $4.5 billion. The balance stands at around $3.2 billion, as of the last week of February.

The quickly diminishing funds could mean trouble for the states. The trust fund allocates about $1.6 billion annually to the state of Pennsylvania for road construction.  The sudden loss of federal funding would, in essence, undo the transportation funding act that passed last year.

Jason Wagner, PHIA managing director, noted that the Keystone Transportation Funding Coalition is turning its attention to the federal level and is attempting to marshal support in Congress.

“The revelation that the trust fund could dry up months before the end of the fiscal year should send a clear message to Congress that it needs to act sooner rather than later,” Wagner said. “Without action, there will be significant pain across the nation, and yet another blow to our transportation infrastructure.”

For more information, visit the Department of Transportation’s Highway Trust Fund ticker by clicking HERE.

 

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