Federalism Issues in Surface Transportation Policy: Past and Present [July 27, 2012] [open pdf - 489KB]
"P.L. 112-141, the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21), was passed by the House and Senate on June 29, 2012, and signed into law by President Obama on July 6, 2012. It reauthorizes federal highway and mass transit programs through the end of FY2014 (27 months) and authorizes to be appropriated $105.2 billion for these programs in FY2013 and FY2014 (about $118 billion including already appropriated funding for FY2012). MAP-21 follows 10 short-term reauthorizations of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, and Efficient Transportation Equity Act of 2005: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA; P.L. 109-59), and lengthy consideration of federalism issues in surface transportation policy. […] Others argue that the federal government has a responsibility to ensure that federal funds are used in the most efficient and effective manner possible to promote the national interest in expanding national economic growth and protecting the environment. In their view, providing states increased flexibility in the use of federal funds diminishes the federal government's ability to ensure that national needs are met. Still others have argued for a fundamental restructuring of federal and state government responsibilities in surface transportation policy, with some responsibilities devolved to states and others remaining with the federal government. This report provides an historical perspective on contemporary federalism issues in surface transportation policy and examines some of the key provisions in MAP-21, focusing on those provisions that are most likely to affect federalism relationships in surface transportation policy."
CRS Report for Congress, R40431