Emergency Relief for Disaster-Damaged Roads and Public Transportation Systems [Updated October 9, 2020] [open pdf - 1MB]
From the Introduction: "Disaster-damaged roads and public transportation systems are eligible for federal assistance under two U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) programs, the Emergency Relief (ER) Program administered by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the Public Transportation ER Program administered by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). The two programs have different histories and legal and regulatory authorities, but they share a similar intent and face some of the same issues. For example, there are concerns with both programs about the extent to which federally funded activities should go beyond restoring infrastructure to predisaster conditions, including so-called resilience projects. This report begins by discussing FHWA assistance for the repair and reconstruction of highways and bridges damaged by disasters (such as recent flood events, Western wildfires, and ongoing permanent repairs to damage from the 2017 Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria) or catastrophic failures (such as the I-5 overpass that was critically damaged in 2019 by an over-height truck near Chehalis, WA). The report includes information on the use of ER funds on disaster-damaged federally owned public-use roadways, such as National Park Service roads and U.S. Forest Service roads, under an affiliated program, the Emergency Relief for Federally Owned Roads Program. This is followed by a discussion of FTA's assistance program, established in 2012, which has provided assistance to public transportation systems on three occasions, once after Hurricane Sandy in 2012, after the 2017 hurricanes, and in 2019 for major declared disasters in 2018."
CRS Report for Congress, R45298
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/