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Environmental Review Toolkit

Interagency Guidance: Transportation Funding
for Federal Agency Coordination
Associated with Environmental Streamlining Activities


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In SAFETEA-LU, Congress eliminated any possible doubt about the eligibility of the FHWA and FTA to receive Federal-aid funds from the States. Congress provided that the Secretary may approve State requests to provide funds:

... to affected Federal agencies (including the Department of Transportation), State agencies, and Indian tribes participating in the environmental review process for the projects in that State or participating in a State process that has been approved by the Secretary for that State ...

Congress also was clear about its intention to authorize Federal agencies to accept funding without triggering an issue of augmentation under appropriation law. The general rule concerning augmentation of appropriations is that when Congress appropriates funds for an activity, the appropriation represents a limitation, and all expenditures for the activity must come from the appropriation absent express authority to the contrary. The language of SAFETEA-LU supports the conclusion that Congress intended the FHWA and other Federal agencies to be able to receive funds above and beyond their general appropriations if the specified conditions are met. Congress expected that the funds would be in addition to general appropriations for the Federal agencies.

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