Government Transportation Revenues and Expenditures:

Government Transportation Revenues vs. Expenditures

Historically, government transportation revenues collected from transportation sources fall short of government transportation expenditures creating a need for additional funding sources.

2020 Year-in-Review (latest available)
  • Transportation expenditures exceeded total transportation revenues (own-source and supporting) by $36.3 billion in 2020.
  • Of total transportation revenues, 45.9 percent came from non-transportation sources, such as local sales taxes dedicated to transportation in 2020.
  • 2020 marks the onset of the first COVID-19 emergency funding package, the CARES Act. For more information on COVID-19 transportation funds, visit COVID-19 Stimulus Funding for Transportation

Total Government Transportation Revenues and Expenditures | Government Transportation Revenues and Expenditures by State
Total Government Transportation Revenues and Expenditures
Revenues collected from transportation-related activity and dedicated to transportation programs (own-source revenue) historically falls short of government transportation expenditures. Funds collected from non-transportation-related activities but dedicated to support transportation programs (supporting revenue), e.g., receipts received by state and local governments from sales or property taxes, help finance the gap between own-source government transportation revenues and government transportation expenditures.
Note: Transportation revenues in several years include transfers to Highway Trust Fund from other sources. See Transportation Trust Funds for transfer amount.

Total Government Transportation Revenues and Expenditures Government Transportation Revenues and Expenditure by State 
Government Transportation Revenues and Expenditures by State
States and local governments allocate funds among transportation modes differently because they have diverse geographies and economies, which lead to different transportation needs. For example, urban areas like the District of Columbia and New York devote a large share of total expenditures to transit. In contrast, inland low-density states in the Great Plains, like North Dakota and South Dakota, spend most of their transportation expenditures on highways. 


U.S. Department of Transportation, Bureau of Transportation Statistics, Transportation Economic Trends, available at

Bureau of Transportation Statistics
The Bureau of Transportation Statistics, part of the U.S. Department of Transportation, is the preeminent source of statistics on commercial aviation, multimodal freight activity, and transportation economics, and provides context to decision makers and the public for understanding statistics on transportation.