State departments of transportation are set to receive funds totaling $9.8 billion as a result of emergency aid from the $900 billion COVID-19 relief measure passed late last year.
That number is a part of nearly $10 billion total earmarked for transportation spending, and experts say the funds are much needed.
“Since the early response to the pandemic, state DOTs have faced severe losses in state transportation revenues as vehicle travel declined,” Jim Tymon, executive director of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, said in a statement. “This COVID relief bill enables state DOTs to stay on track and support the efficient movement of critical goods and services as they maintain their transportation systems.”
The Federal Highway Administration must apportion the funds for state DOTs within 30 days of the bill’s enactment, according to AASHTO. President Donald Trump signed the bill into law Dec. 27. Each state’s portion will be based on the state’s share of obligation limitations within the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation or FAST Act, according to AASHTO.
Here is a sortable look at how much money each state will receive from the COVID-19 relief measure:
Estimate of apportionment for state DOTs
California and Texas will receive the most money with $918 million and $914 million, respectively. Those totals are far ahead the third most for Florida, which will receive $473 million.
Washington, DC, will receive the least amount of funding ($39 million), although among states, the bottom three amounts are for small states: New Hampshire ($41 million), Hawaii ($42 million) and Delaware ($42 million).
State DOTs can use the relief money to fund Surface Transportation Block Grant-eligible projects, preventive and routine maintenance, operations, employee and contractor salaries, debt service and availability payments and coverage for other revenue losses, according to AASHTO. Additionally, the relief funds — which will be available until Sept. 30, 2024 — could be transferred to public tolling and ferry agencies for all of the same costs as state DOTs.
Of the remaining funds for transportation, $115 million will go to the Tribal Transportation Program, $36 million to the Puerto Rico Highway Program, and $9 million to the Territorial Highway Program, according to ForConstructionPros.