Dec 7 2011
Sens. Warner and Kirk Introduce Legislation to Improve Performance Standards for Transportation Projects
Pilot programs will assist state partners through better accountability standards
Currently, states decide how to spend federal transportation funding – almost $46 billion in fiscal year 2009 alone – and a December 2010 report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) found an uneven patchwork when it comes to state-level planning capacity and project management capabilities. The MTTA will allow USDOT to work cooperatively with selected states and localities to begin developing more effective performance measures that ultimately will help every state more consistently gauge how their transportation investments can improve overall transportation connectivity and accessibility while also promoting transportation safety and encouraging greater energy security and environmental protection.
“Most of our current accountability and performance tools are designed to make sure that individual transportation projects remain on-time and on-budget, and that certainly will continue to be critically important,” Senator Warner said. “But in this period of diminished federal and state transportation resources, we obviously need to look for ways to get more ‘bang for the buck.’ Our legislation will help us transition toward more modern, performance-based metrics – tools that ultimately will empower federal, state and regional transportation planners and project managers to make smarter decisions and more cost-effective investments.”
“At a time when the federal government and states are rightfully reducing out-of-control spending, we need to make infrastructure decisions that provide the highest return on investment,” Senator Kirk said. “I’m honored to join Senator Warner in this effort to improve how we allocate scarce resources.”
Specifically, the MTTA authorizes the U.S. Secretary of Transportation and experts at the Office of Management and Budget to partner with 3-5 states and 3-5 MPOs to develop performance goals that are objective, quantifiable, and measurable, and to establish performance measures that adequately indicate progress toward achieving the following goals:
- National Connectivity: Do our transportation investments improve the connection of people and goods across the nation?
- Metropolitan Accessibility: Do our transportation investments allow Americans in metropolitan regions to more reliably and efficiently access jobs and services?
- Economic Growth: How have transportation investments contributed to economic growth and productivity?
- Energy Security and Environmental Protection: Have transportation investments contributed to our national objectives of greater energy security and protecting the environment?
- Safety: Do our transportation investments improve safety by reducing transportation-related injuries and fatalities?
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Kevin Hall (Warner) 202 224 2023
Greg Lemon (Kirk) 202 228 3853
Task Force Press Releases
12/7/11 -Current record
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