Developing Sustainable Methods of Distributing Federal Transit Funds


Matt Sandidge

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

economics - subsidy, economics - appraisal/evaluation, place - north america


UZA formula funds, multiple recipients, local officials, funding models


FTA apportions Section 5307 urbanized area (UZA) formula funds to census-designated UZAs. When UZAs contain multiple recipients of Section 5307 funds, FTA leaves it up to local officials to determine the suballocations to the multiple recipients. Little documentation exists on the question of how to allocate the funds on a local level. The more agencies within a UZA, the more complex the issue becomes. Local officials within the UZAs must develop methods of allocating funds that satisfy the desires of each of the regional stakeholders. The nature in which metropolitan areas grow leads to multiple transit agencies existing within the UZA and desiring access to UZA formula funds. This report identifies seven complex metropolitan areas across the United States with multiple Section 5307 fund recipients, identifies the problems experienced with allocating Section 5307 funds at the local level, and identifies three models of funding distribution techniques. The models of funding distribution include formula, formula and regional project selection, and regional project selection and local negotiations. Though only three models are identified, there is much variation within each model. The report provides details on the allocation within each region.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Transportation Research Board, Washington, copyright remains with them.