Urge Your Members of Congress to Support
Fully Funding of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law
House THUD Appropriations Subcommittee Marks Up
Transportation Appropriations Bill
Today (June 23), the House Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD) Appropriations Subcommittee will mark up its draft Fiscal Year (FY) 2023 THUD Appropriations bill. The Full Committee is scheduled to mark up this bill on June 30. It is unclear when the Senate will introduce or consider its THUD appropriations bill.
The House THUD Appropriations bill fully funds the public transit authorizations of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). In fact, the total public transit appropriation exceeds the IIJA’s authorization levels in FY 2023. With regard to passenger rail, the bill appropriates the overwhelming majority of additional passenger rail funding authorized by the IIJA.
Specifically, the THUD Appropriations bill, together with the IIJA’s advance appropriations, provides a total of $21.7 billion for public transit in FY 2023, an increase of $1.2 billion (6 percent) from the FY 2022 enacted level. This total appropriation is $416 million greater than the amount authorized in the IIJA. In addition, the THUD Appropriations bill and IIJA provide $17.1 billion for passenger and freight rail in FY 2023, an increase of $489 million (3 percent) from the FY 2022 enacted level.
APTA urges you to contact your Members of Congress to support full funding of the IIJA in the THUD Appropriations bill.
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To send a message to your Members of Congress or to learn more, click here to visit a customized page in the APTA Advocacy Campaign Action Center.
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The House THUD Appropriations bill and IIJA provide $21.7 billion for public transit in FY 2023, an increase of $1.2 billion (6 percent) from the FY 2022 enacted level. This total appropriation is $416 million greater than the amount authorized in the IIJA.
The THUD Appropriations bill fully funds the public transit contract authority of $13.6 billion as provided by the IIJA. The THUD Appropriations bill, together with the IIJA advance appropriations, provides $4.6 billion for Capital Investment Grants (CIG), equal to the IIJA authorization. The THUD bill’s $3.0 billion CIG appropriation includes $1.9 billion for New Starts, $41 million for Core Capacity projects, $94 million for Small Starts, and $350 million for the Expedited Project Delivery for CIG Pilot Program. In addition, section 165 sets aside $600 million of CIG funds for projects with existing Full Funding Grant Agreements that received FY 2022 allocations and have either: (1) a CIG share of 40 percent or less; or (2) signed an FFGA during the Trump Administration. Please click here to view APTA’s CIG Project Pipeline Dashboard.
The THUD Appropriations bill also provides an additional $646 million for specific initiatives, including: $200 million for Buses and Bus Facilities Competitive Grants; $75 million for Low-No Emission Bus Grants; $50 million for integrated smart mobility grants; and $267 million for congressionally directed spending on designated public transit projects.
Furthermore, the bill includes several important policy provisions. Section 167 of the bill allows public transit agencies to treat fuel for vehicle operations as associated capital maintenance. This change expands the eligibility to use federal funds to offset fuel costs and increases the federal share to 80 percent. The provision limits the amounts available for fuel costs under this section to five percent of a state’s or urbanized area’s § 5307 and § 5311 funding in FY 2023 or prior years.
In addition, section 164 prohibits the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) from impeding or hindering a project from advancing or approving a project seeking a CIG federal share of more than 40 percent. The legislation also authorizes projects in the Expedited Project Delivery for CIG Pilot Program to be eligible for funding under the CIG program without further evaluation or rating.
Finally, section 163 of the bill includes language blocking the Rostenkowski Test to prevent a possible across-the-board cut of FY 2023 transit formula funds to each public transit agency.
To view APTA’s Public Transit Funding Table of the THUD Appropriations bill, please click here.
The House THUD Appropriations bill and IIJA provide $17.1 billion for passenger and freight rail in FY 2023, an increase of $489 million (3 percent) from the FY 2022 enacted level.
The THUD Appropriations bill provides $3.9 billion for passenger rail investments, including $2.3 billion for Amtrak grants ($1.5 billion for National Network grants and $882 million for the Northeast Corridor), $630 million for Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvement (CRISI) grants, and $555 million for Federal-State Partnership for Intercity Passenger Rail grants. The House THUD Appropriations bill does not allow for the eligible use of CRISI grants for commuter railroad projects for the deployment of railroad safety technology, including positive train control and rail integrity inspection systems.
To view APTA’s Passenger Rail Funding Table of the THUD Appropriations bill, please click here.
U.S. Department of Transportation Programs
The legislation provides $775 million for Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) competitive grants for surface transportation projects, including public transportation and multi-modal projects. When combined with the advance appropriations included in the IIJA, the House provides $2.3 billion for RAISE grants in FY 2023, equal to the FY 2022 enacted level.
To view the draft House THUD Appropriations bill, please click here.
To view APTA’s letter to House THUD Appropriations Committee leaders, please click here.
APTA and Coalition Partners Oppose Gas Tax Holiday
On June 22, APTA, together with more than 30 Coalition partners, wrote to President Biden opposing any and all efforts to undermine recent and historic infrastructure investments, including suspending federal and state motor fuel user fees, commonly referred to as “gas taxes”.
To view the Coalition letter opposing a gas tax holiday, please click here.
APTA and Coalition Partners Urge Extension of Build America, Buy America Act Waiver for Construction Materials
On May 19, 2022, the DOT issued a Temporary Waiver of Buy America Requirements for Construction Materials for a period of 180 days beginning on May 14, 2022, and expiring on November 10, 2022. DOT is establishing this transitional waiver to prepare for compliance with the new Buy America standards for construction materials. During this time, DOT expects states, industry, and other partners to begin developing procedures to document compliance.
On June 21, APTA, together with more than 40 Coalition partners, wrote to White House Infrastructure Coordinator Mitch Landrieu to urge DOT to conduct thorough analyses of domestic manufacturing capabilities, provide sufficient opportunity for public comment on draft rules, and provide adequate time for public and private entities to adjust and learn final rules prior to implementing the new Buy America standards for construction materials. The Coalition further urges the Administration to extend the Build America, Buy America Act (BABA) waiver for construction materials to ensure that projects are not needlessly delayed.
To view the Coalition letter urging an extension of the Buy America Act waiver for construction materials, please click here.
To view APTA’s BABA summary, please click here.
APTA Supports Congressional Effort to Urge DOT to
Extend Deadline for Emergency Relief Construction
APTA has worked with Senator Padilla (D-CA), Senator Cornyn (R-TX), and interested Representatives on a bipartisan effort to urge DOT to review and update Emergency Relief regulations. Specifically, the Members of Congress ask DOT to extend the initial deadline for construction obligation to ensure states and communities that are impacted by natural disasters have adequate time to utilize Emergency Relief public transit and highway funds to repair transportation infrastructure.
To view the Congressional letter on Emergency Relief construction, please click here.