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The Transportation, Community, and System Preservation (TCSP) Program provides funding for a comprehensive initiative including planning grants, implementation grants, and research to investigate and address the relationships among transportation, community, and system preservation plans and practices and identify private sector-based initiatives to improve those relationships.
States, metropolitan planning organizations, local governments, and tribal governments are eligible for TCSP Program discretionary grants to plan and implement strategies which improve the efficiency of the transportation system, reduce environmental impacts of transportation, reduce the need for costly future public infrastructure investments, ensure efficient access to jobs, services and centers of trade, and examine development patterns and identify strategies to encourage private sector development patterns which achieve these goals.
Authorized funding for the TCSP Program is $61.25 million per year for FY 2006 through 2009. These funds are subject to the obligation limitation. The Federal share payable on account of any TCSP project or activity shall be 80% or subject to the sliding scale rate [23 USC 120(b)].
Additional information on the TCSP Program can be found at the following links:
SAFETEA-LU Section: 1117.
Funded by contract authority; funds are not transferable. Funds are subject to the overall Federal-aid highway obligation limitation. [1117, 1102]
Funds are to be allocated by the Secretary to States, metropolitan planning organizations, local and tribal governments, ensuring an equitable distribution to a diversity of populations and geographic regions.
The Federal share payable on account of any project or activity carried out under 23 USC 120(b) shall be 80% or subject to the sliding scale rate.
The TCSP 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 1117 discussed above.
The FHWA is soliciting applications for the TCSP Program for FY 2007. FHWA is focusing on projects which, in addition to meeting statutory criteria of the program, provide substantial benefits relating to highway safety or congestion relief. In addition to traditional projects applications, FHWA invites applications of larger-scale projects that provide strategic safety and congestion benefits under the TCSP Program.
Highway safety has been an increasing focus and priority for FHWA over the recent past. Targeting discretionary funding like TCSP funds, in a results-oriented comprehensive approach to safety is a means of directing limited discretionary funding to those projects that will yield tangible transportation and safety benefits. With respect to safety, applicants should describe the safety benefits associated with the project or activity for which funding is sought, including whether the project, activity, or improvement:
Increasing mobility by reducing congestion has also been a priority for FHWA over the past few years. The application of discretionary funding to improve mobility and reduce congestion will yield tangible transportation and economic benefits that should far exceed the limited amount of discretionary funding provided to the project. These safety and congestion benefits are the types of benefits that the General Accountability Office recommended be assessed in making discretionary grant awards in an earlier report discussing the FHWA discretionary grant process.
In furtherance of measuring the congestion reduction and mobility benefits associated with a project that qualifies for funding under the TCSP Program, within the application, the applicant should describe how the TCSP project, activity or improvement:
Funds may be used to carry out eligible projects to integrate transportation, community, and system preservation plans and practices that:
Eligibility is broadly defined as a project eligible for assistance under Title 23 or Chapter 53 of Title 49, or any other activity the Secretary determines to be appropriate to implement transit-oriented development plans, traffic calming measures, or other coordinated TCSP practices.
The Secretary of Transportation will make grants for projects to States, metropolitan planning organizations, local governments, and tribal governments, with priority consideration given to projects that:
FHWA notes that the following criteria may be considered in the evaluation of candidates for this program:
This solicitation was also be posted on FHWA's website at http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/planning/tcsp/projects/. The FHWA division offices should provide this solicitation request to the State transportation departments, the primary agency that administers the TCSP Program projects. The State transportation department should coordinates with local agencies within their State to develop viable candidate projects and submits the candidate applications to the FHWA division office.
Should potential grantees have inquiries on the submission of a TCSP Program grant application, they can be directed to the attention of the FHWA Division Office contact identified at http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/planning/tcsp/links/field.cfm. After the division office has reviewed the submission and ensured that the submission and all applications meet the TCSP Program requirements, they should send the applications to the FHWA Office of Planning in Headquarters. The specific timetable for the solicitation process for any particular fiscal year is provided in the solicitation memorandum.
The candidate project applications are reviewed and evaluated by the FHWA Office of Planning and an allocation plan is prepared for presentation of the candidate projects to the Office of the Federal Highway Administrator, where the final selection of projects for funding is made. The announcement of the selected projects and the allocation of funds are usually accomplished in June or July.
States, metropolitan planning organizations, local governments, and tribal governments may submit applications for funding under this program. The following information must be included to properly evaluate the candidate projects. The appropriate division office must submit the applications by electronic mail in Microsoft Word format. Those applications that do not include these items are considered incomplete and will not be considered in the evaluation selection process.
If the potential grantee desires to submit additional information, such as maps, pictures, copies of support letters etc., those items must be submitted by hard copy to the FHWA division office, which will provide this information to the Office of Planning. 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 and are not to be sent electronically. Any support letters should be addressed and sent to the Federal Highway Administrator, who is the official ultimately responsible for selecting projects for funding.
After the applications are received and projects are selected for funding, after the Congressional notification process is completed, the FHWA Office of Planning will issue an announcement by email to all FHWA division offices announcing the TCSP 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. 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 Planning will issue the allocation memorandum within a few days of receiving the allocation request from the division office.