Department of Transportation

The Federal Budget

  Media contact: 202-366-4750
FY2012 Request:  $128 billion
FY2011 Request:  $79 billion
FY2010 Enacted:  $77 billion

A well-functioning transportation system is critical to the Nation’s prosperity. Whether it is by road, transit, aviation, rail, or waterway, we rely on our transportation system to move people and goods safely, facilitate commerce, attract and retain businesses, and support jobs. The President’s Budget provides $128 billion to support these efforts, including $13 billion in discretionary budget authority, $109 billion in obligation limitations and $6 billion in mandatory budget authority. Increases are made to enable the Department to deliver on its core safety mission and support economic growth. The Budget also features reforms to surface transportation programs, including a consolidation of 55 duplicative, often-earmarked highway programs into five streamlined ones.

Invests in Infrastructure Critical for Long Term Growth and Job Creation

  • Proposes $556 billion for a six-year surface transportation reauthorization proposal that invests in America’s future, creates jobs, and reforms how Federal dollars are spent. It reflects a need to balance fiscal discipline with efforts to expedite our economic recovery and job creation.
  • As part of the surface transportation plan, boosts funding by $50 billion in the first year to create hundreds of thousands of jobs in industries suffering from protracted unemployment.
  • Provides $8 billion in 2012 and $53 billion over six years to improve passenger rail service and expand  capacity toward reaching the President’s goal of providing 80 percent of Americans with convenient access to a passenger rail system, featuring high-speed service, within 25 years.
  • Invests $30 billion in a National Infrastructure Bank to provide loans and grants for projects of regional and national significance, supporting economic competitiveness.
  • Supports implementation of the NextGen Air Traffic Control System at $1.24 billion to improve efficiency, safety, capacity, and environmental performance of the aviation system.

Reduces Costs to Taxpayers and Improves Services through Reform

  • Adopts a “Fix-It-First” approach for highway and transit grants, which will emphasize improving the condition of existing infrastructure. Consolidates 55 highway programs into five, to give States and localities greater flexibility to direct resources to their highest priorities and simplify operations.
  • Provides $32 billion for a competitive grant program designed to create incentives for State and local partners to adopt critical reforms in safety, livability and demand management.
  • Reduces guaranteed funding for large airports, allows them more flexibility to generate their own revenue, and focuses federal grants on small commercial and general aviation airports.
  • Commits to work with Congress to ensure that the funding increases for surface transportation do not increase the deficit, following a suggestion by the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform.
  • Contains no earmarks and seeks to cancel long-dormant ones.