Surface transportation funding includes discretionary grants and formula grants, which combined provide most of the transportation funding in the BIL. Discretionary grants are grants that are awarded to eligible applicants on a competitive basis, and therefore are also sometimes referred to as competitive grants. Formula grants are grants that are distributed based on statutes and are also sometimes referred to as mandatory grants, non-discretionary grants, or non-competitive grants.
The BIL designates $195.9 billion in transportation funding to discretionary grant programs over five years. Some of the largest discretionary transportation grant programs in the BIL include the Federal-State Partnership for Intercity Passenger Rail Grants ($43.5 billion), Capital Investment Grants ($23.0 billion), the Bridge Investment Program ($15.8 billion), National Infrastructure Project Assistance (Megaprojects) ($15.0 billion), and Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) grants ($15.0 billion).
The majority of transportation funding in the BIL, $446.2 billion, is allocated to formula grant programs. Some of the larger transportation formula grant programs include the FHWA formula grant programs. The largest of these include the National Highway Performance Program ($148.0 billion), Surface Transportation Block Grant Program ($72.0 billion), Highway Safety Improvement Program ($15.6 billion), and Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program ($13.2 billion). Other large formula grant programs include the Urbanized Area Formula Grants ($33.4 billion), Amtrak National Network grants ($28.7 billion), and the Bridge Replacement, Rehabilitation, Preservation, Protection, and Construction Program ($26.7 billion).