Skip to contentUnited States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway AdministrationSearch FHWAFeedback

Discretionary

Word Version (30 kb)

Interstate Maintenance Discretionary
Program Information
(May 2010)

BACKGROUND:

The Interstate Maintenance Discretionary (IMD) Program provides funding for resurfacing, restoration, rehabilitation and reconstruction (4R) work, including added lanes to increase capacity, on most existing Interstate System routes.  This discretionary program was first established by the Surface Transportation Assistance Act of 1982 and was known as the I-4R Discretionary Program.  The Surface Transportation and Uniform Relocation Assistance Act of 1987 and the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 continued funding with set-asides from I-4R and National Highway System (NHS) authorizations, respectively, for each of fiscal years 1988 through 1997.  The 1998 Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21) and following extensions continued this program by authorizing set-asides from the Interstate Maintenance (IM) funds from 1998 to mid-2005.  The 2005 Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU, Public Law 109-59) continues the program through 2009.  For 2010, the program is being continued through extension of SAFETEA-LU by the Surface Transportation Extension Act of 2010, (Public Law 111-147).

STATUTORY REFERENCES:

23 U.S.C. 118(c); SAFETEA-LU Section 1111(a).

FUNDING:

Fiscal Year 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
Authorization $100M $100M $100M $100M $100M $100M

Section 118(c)(1) of Title 23 authorizes $100 million for each of fiscal years 2005 through 2009 for the IMD program.  Under the provisions of SAFETEA-LU Section 1102(f), Redistribution of Certain Authorized Funds, any funds authorized for the program for the fiscal year, which are not available for obligation due to the imposition of an obligation limitation, are not allocated for the IMD program, but are redistributed to the States by formula as STP funds.  These provisions have been extended for fiscal year 2010.

For FY 2010, under the provisions of Section 186 of Division A of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2010 (Public Law 111-68), Congress designated a portion of the FY 2010 IMD funds for “eligible programs, projects and activities in the corresponding amounts identified in the committee Report” accompanying the Appropriations Act. 

FEDERAL SHARE:

In accordance with 23 U.S.C. 120, the Federal share of the costs for most projects eligible under this program is 90 percent.  However, the Federal share is 80 percent on projects, or the portion of projects, for work involving added single-occupancy vehicle lanes to increase capacity.  The sliding scale provisions under 23 U.S.C. 120 also apply to the Federal share for these IMD projects.

OBLIGATION LIMITATION:

The IMD funds are subject to obligation limitation; however, 100 percent obligation authority is provided with the allocation of funds for the selected projects.  The obligation limitation reduces the available funding for the program under the provisions of SAFETEA-LU Section 1102(f) discussed above.  For FY 2010, these provisions are continued in Section 120(e) of Division A of the Appropriations Act.

ELIGIBILITY:

Projects Not Designated by Congress

The statutory criteria for eligibility of IMD projects are provided in section 118(c) of 23 U.S.C., as follows:

  1. IMD funds are available for resurfacing, restoring, rehabilitating and reconstructing (4R) work, including added lanes, on the Interstate System.  However, not eligible for allocation of IMD funds are projects on any highway designated as a part of the Interstate System under section 139 of 23 U.S.C., as in effect before the enactment of TEA-21, and any toll road on the Interstate System not subject to an agreement under section 119(e) of 23 U.S.C., as in effect on December 17, 1991.  Also not eligible are projects on any highway added to the Interstate System under section 103(c)(4) of 23 U.S.C. and section 1105(e)(5)(A) of ISTEA.  Any proposed or future Interstate route is also not eligible for IMD funds.  The website http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/reports/routefinder/table3.cfm may assist in this determination.

  2. Under the provisions of 23 U.S.C. 118(c)(2), a State is eligible to receive an allocation of IMD funds, if it has obligated or demonstrates that it will obligate in the fiscal year all of its Interstate Maintenance (IM) funds apportioned under section 104(b)(4) of 23 U.S.C., other than an amount which, by itself, is insufficient to pay the Federal share of the cost of a project which has been submitted by the State for approval.  Therefore, to be eligible to apply for FY 2010 IMD funds, a State must show how it will obligate all of its current unobligated balance of IM funds (L010 or L01E) in FY 2010, without transferring these to another category.  Any designating of IM unobligated balances for rescission (if applicable), to meet any rescission of apportioned funds imposed for FY 2010, is acceptable, as long as it is limited to IM’s proportional share of the State’s unobligated balances.  A State designating for rescission more than IM’s proportional share of its unobligated balances would result in the State not being eligible for IMD funds in FY 2010. 

  3. The State must be willing and able to obligate the IMD funds within 1 year of the date the funds are made available, apply the funds to a ready-to-commence project, and in the case of construction work, begin work within 90 days after obligation.

In 1992, Headquarters established an administrative policy that Interstate 4R discretionary funds would not be allocated to a State that had, in the preceding fiscal year, transferred either National Highway System (NHS) or Interstate Maintenance (IM) funds to the Surface Transportation Program (STP) apportionment.  This policy was based on the tremendous Interstate System needs across the country and that the congressional intent for IMD funds was to give priority consideration to high cost projects in States where available apportionments were insufficient to allow such projects to proceed on a timely basis.  This policy is still appropriate; however, because of the designation of IMD funds by Congress and rescissions of apportioned funds in recent years, this administrative policy is being waived prior to the solicitation for FY 2010.    

Therefore, for this FY2010 solicitation, States will not lose their eligibility to apply for IMD funds, if they transferred IM or NHS funds prior to the date of the solicitation memo for projects not designated by Congress.  However, it is expected that the application will show how the State will obligate its current unobligated balance of IM funds in FY2010 without any further transfers to other categories.  This is a statutory criteria (Item 2 above), and is still necessary to ensure projects selected represent the needs that cannot be met with the States' current IM apportionments, which is the statutory intent of the IMD funds.

Projects Designated by Congress

Since 2002, Congress has been designating IMD funding for specific projects that they list in the Statement of Managers in the conference report that accompanies the annual transportation appropriations act.  In addition, Congress may establish a provision in the annual transportation appropriations act that declares these listed projects eligible for IMD funding “notwithstanding any other provision of law.”  Also, IM obligation and transfer rules noted above do not apply to designated project selection.

For FY 2008 to 2010, the designated projects in the statement of managers accompanying the Appropriations Act must meet the above statutory eligibility criteria in 23 U.S.C. 118(c)(1) because Congress did not include any additional eligibility provision.

SELECTION CRITERIA:

Projects Not Designated by Congress

Under the provisions of 23 U.S.C. 118(c)(3), priority consideration shall be given to any project the cost of which exceeds $10 million on any high volume route in an urban area or a high truck-volume route in a rural area.

FHWA has not established regulatory criteria for selection of IMD projects; however, in its annual solicitation, FHWA notes that the following criteria are also considered in the evaluation of candidates for this program:

  • Leveraging of private or other public funding - Because the annual requests for funding far exceed the available IMD funds, commitment of other funding sources to complement the requested IMD funds is an important factor.
  • State priorities - For States that submit more than one project, consideration is given to the individual State's priorities.
  • Expeditious completion of project - Preference is also given to requests that will expedite the completion of a viable project over requests for initial funding of a project that will require a long-term commitment of future IMD funding.  For large-scale projects, consideration is given to the State's total funding plan to expedite the completion of the project.
  • Transportation benefits that will be derived upon completion of the project.

Projects Designated by Congress

If projects are designated by Congress and Congress applied a provision stating that they are eligible “notwithstanding any other provision of law”, then, as long as the project description and scope of work in the application is consistent with the designation, the project will be selected.  Projects not made eligible by Congress must first meet the eligibility criteria and then as long as the project description and scope of work in the application matches the designation, it will be selected.

SOLICITATION PROCEDURE:

For FY 2010, applications are being solicited for both congressionally designated and open discretionary projects under separate memorandums.   As indicated previously, these designated projects must still meet the eligibility requirements under Section 118(c)(1) of Title 23.

Memorandums are issued by the FHWA Headquarters Office of Program Administration to the FHWA division offices requesting submission of applications.  The division offices send the memo to the State DOTs, who are responsible for submitting the applications to FHWA.

Projects submitted for the open solicitation must be received by the deadline established in the solicitation memo or they may not be considered.  For designated projects, applications are requested to be submitted by a deadline.  If the deadline is missed, it is requested that the applications be submitted as soon as possible so awards can be made in a timely manner.

SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS:

Projects Not Designated by Congress

Only State transportation departments may submit applications for funding under this program.  The application for each project must be submitted by the deadline and include the following information (19 items) so that a proper evaluation may be made of all candidate projects.  Those applications that do not include these items are incomplete and may not be considered in the evaluation and selection process. The application for each project must be submitted electronically in MS Word format, and should be limited to two to three pages.

  1. State in which the project is located.
  2. County in which the project is located.
  3. U.S. Congressional District No.(s) in which the project is located. This is the U.S. Congressional District, not the State district.
  4. U.S. Congressional District Member’s and U.S. Senators’ Names.  This is the U.S. Congressional members, not the State legislature.
  5. Project Title - This should be a very short project description that readily identifies the project including the Interstate route number.
  6. Project Location - Describe the specific location of the project, including route number and termini, if applicable.  Also include appropriate local jurisdiction in which the project is located.
  7. Urban or Rural – Indicate name of urban area or indicate location is in a rural area.  Urban area means a geographic area with a population of 50,000 or more as designated by the Bureau of the Census.
  8. Proposed Work - Describe the project scope of work that is to be completed with the funding, and whether this is a complete project or part of a larger project.  Only include work that would be eligible for the IMD funding.
  9. Eligibility - Describe how the proposed project meets the statutory eligibility requirements of 23 U.S.C. 118(c)(1) (see page 2 for details). State under which statutory section the segment of Interstate was added to the system to the extent known.
  10. Current ADT – Provide the current 2-way average daily traffic (ADT), including the percentage of trucks.
  11. Number of Through Lanes – Provide the number of lanes before and after completion of the project.  This and the ADT are used to gauge the degree of congestion on the route.
  12. Project Purpose & Benefits - This should include a list of the needs for the project and how each of those needs will be addressed by completion of the project.  Other transportation benefits that will result from completion of the project, such as improved public safety, economic development, community enhancement, etc., should be described.  Specifics, such as anticipated reductions in crash rates, etc. should be provided if available. 
  13. Total Project Cost – Indicate the total estimated cost of the project.  Do not include cost of extensions or relocations of non-Interstate routes related to an interchange.
  14. Amount of Federal IMD Funds Requested - Indicate the amount of Federal IMD funds being requested for the fiscal year.  Candidates should only be submitted from projects that are ready to advance as provided in the solicitation.  If a State is willing to accept partial funding of the request, that amount should also be indicated, and should be based upon the ability to fashion a project that is ready to advance in the fiscal year with that amount of funding.
  15. Commitment of Other Funds - Indicate the amounts and sources of any private or other public funding being provided as part of this project.  Only indicate those amounts of funding that are firm and documented commitments.  Do not include funding that was provided for previous projects or previous or future phases of work.  Only the committed funding to go with this fiscal year’s IMD request is to be included.  Only specific amounts with the source identified will be considered in the evaluation process.
  16. Previous IMD Funding - Indicate the amount and fiscal year of any previous IMD funds received for this project.  Only include previous IMD funds, not other funding sources.
  17. Future Funding Needs - Indicate the estimated future funding needs for the project, including anticipated requests for additional IMD funding and the items of work for which the funds are needed.  For example, if the current request is for design work or an initial phase of construction, funding needs for future construction should be included.
  18. Obligation of IM Funds – Describe how the State will obligate all of its IM apportionments before the end of the fiscal year.  Transferring IM funds in whole or in part to other fund categories does not constitute obligation of IM funds.  (Note, transfers authorized prior to the solicitation will be acceptable.)
  19. Project Schedule – The anticipated project schedule (assuming the requested IMD funding is provided) is required.  The schedule should show when the funds will be obligated (month and year), when construction will commence, and the anticipated completion date.  Applications should only be submitted for projects that are ready to advance if the funding request is met.

If the State desires to submit additional information, such as maps, pictures, copies of support letters etc., those items must be submitted by hard copy or electronically in PDF format no larger than 2 megabytes to the FHWA division office, who will submit them to the Office of Program Administration.  This additional information should be identified by the State and Project Title that matches items 1 and 5 of the electronic application.  These additional items are not required.  Any support letters should be addressed and sent to the Federal Highway Administrator, who is the official ultimately responsible for selecting projects for funding.

Projects Designated by Congress

A short application form will be used for projects designated by Congress.  The application for each project must include the following information (12 items).  Those applications that do not include these items are considered incomplete and funding will not be available for those projects until an acceptable application is submitted.  The application for each project must be submitted electronically in MS Word format, and be limited to two pages.

  1. State in which the project is located.
  2. County in which the project is located.
  3. U.S. Congressional District No.(s) in which the project is located.  This is the U.S. Congressional District, not the State district.
  4. U.S. Senators and Congressional District Member’s Names.  This is the U.S. Senators and Congressional District representative, not the State legislature.
  5. Project Designation (Title) - This should be the description of the project as listed in the explanatory statement accompanying the Consolidated Appropriations Act.
  6. Project Location - Describe the specific location of the project, including route number and termini, if applicable.  Also include appropriate local jurisdiction in which the project is located.
  7. Proposed Work - Describe the scope of work including the project limits where these funds are to be used.  Describe whether this is a complete project or part of a larger project.  Please ensure that the proposed work falls within the description of the designated project (Item 5 above) and within eligible limits for such funding.
  8. Eligibility - Describe how the proposed project meets the statutory eligibility requirements of 23 U.S.C. 118(c)(1) (see page 2 for details).  If the project does not meet these eligibility requirements, please note that here. 
  9. Project Purpose & Benefits - Transportation benefits that will result from completion of the project, such as improved public safety, economic development, congestion relief, community enhancement, etc., should be described.  Specifics, such as anticipated reductions in accident rates, etc. should be provided if available.
  10. Total Project Cost – Indicate the total estimated cost of the project within the scope of the eligible project.  For example, only include the cost of a new or modified interchange.  Do not include cost of extensions or relocations of non-Interstate routes related to the interchange.
  11. Amount of Federal IMD Funds Requested - Indicate the amount of Federal IMD funds being requested for the fiscal year.  This should be the award amount shown in Attachment 1 to the solicitation memo. 
  12. Project Schedule – The anticipated project schedule is required.  The schedule should indicate the proposed date that funds will be obligated, when construction will commence, and the anticipated completion date.

ANNOUNCEMENT OF AWARDS / ALLOCATION OF FUNDS

After the applications are received, it is required that Congress be notified before the funds are allocated to the States.  When this Congressional notification process is completed, the Office of Program Administration will issue an announcement by email to all FHWA division offices, announcing the IMD projects that will be funded and the amount of funding for each project.

At that time, States may request that funds be allocated for any projects for which the funds are ready to be obligated. Awarded projects can be found at the website http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/discretionary/recaward.cfm. The State transportation agency shall send an email to the FHWA division office indicating the project, the amount requested for allocation, and the date by which the funds will be obligated.  The Office of Program Administration will issue the allocation memorandum within a few days of receiving the allocation request.   It should be noted that these funds subject to August redistribution of obligation authority and therefore any allocated funds must be obligated by the end of the fiscal year.

STATE TRANSPORTATION AGENCY RESPONSIBILITIES:

  1. Coordinate with local governments and MPOs within the State, as necessary, to develop project applications.
  2. Ensure that the applications are completed for candidate projects in accordance with the submission requirements outlined above.
  3. Submit the applications electronically to the local FHWA division office on time so that the submission deadline can be met.
  4. Submit request to FHWA division office for allocation of funds, after awards are announced and when project funds are ready to be obligated.

FHWA DIVISION OFFICE RESPONSIBILITIES:

  1. Provide the solicitation memorandum and this program information to the State transportation agency electronically to facilitate their electronic submission of applications.
  2. Request candidate projects be submitted by the State to the FHWA division office electronically to meet the submission deadline established in the solicitation.
  3. Review all candidate applications submitted by the State prior to sending them to FHWA Headquarters to ensure that they are complete and meet the eligibility and submission requirements.
  4. Submit the candidate applications electronically to FHWA Headquarters Office of Program Administration as outlined in the solicitation memorandum.  Include the following with the transmitting email message:
    1. Statement from the division office that the State’s submittal has been reviewed by the division office and that it meets the submission requirements.  Include any concerns about eligibility of the project.
    2. State transportation department submission email or letter to the FHWA division office. (This will document that all applications were submitted by the State transportation department, as required.)
    3. Each MS Word two-page application as a separate attachment.
  5. Forward award announcement to the State.
  6. Forward allocation requests from State to the Office of Program Administration, via email to Tony DeSimone (Anthony.DeSimone@dot.gov).

FHWA HEADQUARTERS PROGRAM OFFICE RESPONSIBILITIES:

  1. Solicit applications from the States through annual solicitation memorandum.
  2. Review applications and compile appropriate program and project information for the Office of the Federal Highway Administrator.
  3. Issue award announcement via email to all FHWA division offices.
  4. Allocate funds upon receipt of request from State through the FHWA division office.

FHWA HEADQUARTERS PROGRAM OFFICE CONTACT:

Tony DeSimone, Office of Program Administration
Phone: (317) 226-5307
Fax: (317) 226-7341
Email: Anthony.Desimone@dot.gov

Contact

Claretta Duren
Office of Program Administration
202-366-4636
E-mail Claretta

 
 
Word files can be viewed with the Word Viewer
Updated: 04/06/2011
 

FHWA
United States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway Administration