The Associated Press

Infrastructure: Highway Funding

About the data set

The Associated Press and the Associated Press Media Editors association are beginning a year-long collaborative project about infrastructure needs throughout the country. The first of those stories focuses on highway funding. Although total state spending on highways, roads and bridges rose by more than the rate of inflation from 2003-2013, that spending arc slowed during the past five years. And the amount of highway funding available to states from the federal Highway Trust Fund declined from 2008-2013. As federal funding has become less certain, the need for repairs and improvements has mounted, and governors and state legislators across the country have increasingly been considering their own proposals for generating more highway funding.

The included spreadsheets provide state-by-state comparisons of total highway spending and of federal funding, in both actual and inflation-adjusted dollars. The spreadsheets also include per capita figures, which allow comparisons of spending to neighboring or similarly sized states.

Included spreadsheets

The AP is providing two spreadsheets that offer opportunities for members to localize the data for their targeted audiences. Each spreadsheet has three pages of data. They cover the years 2003-2013, the latest year for which data was available from the Federal Highway Administration.

Infrastructure-Highway Funding-Total State and Federal.xlsx - Total state spending on highways. This includes state and federal dollars spent by states through their highway programs, which can include construction and maintenance, highway safety and law enforcement efforts, bond payments and administrative costs. The first page shows actual dollars spent for each year. The second page shows per capita spending for the selected years of 2003, 2008 and 2013. The third page shows annual spending adjusted for inflation, with prior years' figures put in 2013 dollars.

Infrastructure-Highway Funding-Federal Only.xlsx - Amount of highway funding available to states from the Federal Highway Trust Fund. This focuses on the highway account in the trust fund, not the transit account. The first page shows the amount available to states annually in actual dollars. The second page shows per capita funding for the selected years of 2003, 2008 and 2013. The third page shows the annual amounts of available funding adjusted for inflation, with the prior years' figures put in 2013 dollars. This spreadsheet shows that highway funds available from the federal government have declined on an inflation-adjusted basis for almost every state during the past five years.

Download the data files: highway_funding.zip

IMPORTANT notes about the data set

All data collected and prepared by AP Correspondent David A. Lieb.