Highway Trust Fund: Improved Solvency Mechanisms and Communication Needed to Help Avoid Shortfalls in the Highway Account
DIANE Publishing, 2009 - 28 pages
The Highway Account within the Highway Trust Fund is the primary mechanism for funding fed. highway programs. The account -- administered by the Fed. Highway Admin. (FHWA) -- channels about $33 billion in highway user excise taxes annually to states for highway projects. A shortfall in the balance became imminent in Aug. 2008. In Sept., Congress passed legislation to provide $8 billion to replenish the account, but officials anticipate the account could reach a critical stage again in FY 2009. This report: (1) describes the events that led to the decline in the account balance; and (2) identifies potential improvements in mechanisms to manage account solvency. Includes strategies that could be used to better align account outlays and revenues.
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$8 billion appropriation According to DOT account balance dropped allocated analysis of FHWA annual adjustments apportionments authorization period billion in fiscal Byrd Test communicating with stakeholders Congress Congressional Budget Office contract authority deposit Diesel DOT agencies DOT officials DOT’s downward adjustment estimated receipts Estimates in SAFETEA-LU failed the Byrd federal funds federal government Federal Highway Administration FHWA data Figure fiscal year 2008 fuel taxes GAO analysis gasoline help DOT Highway Account balance Highway Account Receipts Highway Account revenues Highway Account Solvency highway programs Highway Trust Fund Highway User Excise improved mechanisms Infrastructure Internal Revenue Service legislation Maintain Highway Account Mass Transit Account Mechanisms Could Help monitoring the account obligation limitations prorated payments quarter of fiscal RABA adjustment Receipt Estimates reimburse SAFETEA-LU authorization September 15 solvency mechanisms surface transportation programs trailer sales Treasury Treasury’s Truck and trailer Trust Fund percent unpaid commitments vehicle miles traveled zero balance