Transportation Economic Trends
Government Transportation Revenues and Expenditures:
Government Transportation Revenue
Government transportation revenue comes from several sources, including user fees, transportation related taxes, and general revenues. This revenue funds government transportation expenditures on critical activities, like building highways, operating the Nation’s air traffic control system, and maintaining transit facilities.
2018 Year-in-Review (latest available)
According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics' Government Transportation Financial Statistics:
- In 2018 federal, state, and local revenue collected and dedicated to transportation programs totaled $370.5 billion (in 2018 dollars).
- Federal transportation revenue accounted for about one-quarter ($98.2 billion) of total transportation revenue collected in 2018. State and local government transportation revenue accounted for the remainder ($272.3 billion).
The Bureau of Transportation Statistics' Government Transportation Financial Statistics (GTFS) aggregates data from a variety of sources to provide information on transportation-related revenue for all levels of government and for all modes of transportation. Data are also available for government transportation expenditures.
Total Government Transportation Revenue
For reporting, government transportation revenue is classified into two categories:
1. Own-source revenue: taxes and charges levied on transportation-related activities and used specifically for transportation, for example motor fuel taxes.
2. Supporting revenue: funds collected from non-transportation-related activities but dedicated to support transportation programs, e.g., receipts received by state and local governments from sales or property taxes. It excludes funds raised from transportation-related activities but used to finance programs other than transportation.
Borrowing is not considered transportation revenue and is not included in the totals.
State and local government transportation revenue from all sources accounts for about three-quarters of total government transportation revenue. Federal transportation revenue from all sources accounts for the remaining quarter of total government transportation revenue.
Own-Source and Supporting Government Transportation Revenue by Level of Government
The following presents government transportation revenue collected, by mode, from taxes and charges levied on transportation activities (own-source revenue) and funds collected from non-transportation activities but dedicated to transportation (supporting revenue).