US DOT: Budget Highlights Fiscal Year 2013

Posted by Content Coordinator on Wednesday, February 15th, 2012


Overall Summary

Investment in transportation is critical to the success of our Nation’s economy. The FY 2013 President’s Budget request will enable us to build America’s infrastructure for the future— while putting people back to work today.

  • The centerpiece of the President’s FY 2013 Budget for the Department of Transportation is a bold six-year $476 billion surface transportation reauthorization proposal to improve the Nation’s highways, transit, and rail infrastructure and to ensure that these systems are safe.
  • This proposal is fully paid for. We will pay for these investments with the savings achieved from ramping down overseas military operations by redirecting these resources to build America’s transportation infrastructure.
  • The President’s request also reflects an additional $50 billion in funding for Immediate Transportation Investments in FY 2012. We will invest in critical areas of transportation to provide a targeted economic boost and jump start the creation of jobs throughout America.


The FY 2013 Budget request will support the success of our economy by ensuring that our transportation investments keep pace with the latest innovations and advancements in technologies. The Budget proposes:

  • Modernizing the air traffic system. FAA is in the middle of undertaking the largest transformation of air traffic control ever. Over $1 billion will be invested in FY 2013 to advance the modernization of our air traffic system through “NextGen”—the next generation of air traffic control technology. Through the use of satellite surveillance, new methods of routing pilots, planes, and landing procedures, NextGen will change how Americans fly.
  • Continuing Investment in High Speed Rail. The Federal Railroad Administration is working with States to plan and develop high-speed and intercity passenger rail corridors across the country. These projects include upgrades to existing services, as well as entirely new rail lines exclusively devoted to 125 to 220 mph trains. These corridors will promote economic expansion, create new choices for travelers, reduce National dependence on oil, and foster livable urban and rural communities. In FY 2013, the President’s Budget proposes $2.5 billion for this program.
  • Emphasizing Research Coordination. The FY 2013 budget proposes to elevate the vital role research plays in transportation decision making by moving the Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) into a new Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology. This proposal will strengthen research functions across the Department by providing a prominent centralized focus on research and technology, which will improve collaboration and coordination between the Department’s operating administrations.
  • Promoting Research into Intelligent Transportation Systems, including Vehicle to Vehicle technologies. Vehicle-to-Vehicle (V2V) connectivity provides constant communication between vehicles to warn drivers of the potential risk of a collision. In FY 2013, the Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) program will dedicate a total of $22.4 million to the V2V program, and the corollary programs including human factors research, the implementation of a safety pilot, vehicle connectivity policy research and standards development to further explore and advance technologies that will ultimately reduce the number of collisions and save lives.
  • Advancing Unmanned Aircraft Systems. Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) play an increasing role in both federal and civil missions, including homeland security, National defense, law enforcement, weather monitoring and surveying. However, technical and procedural barriers still exist in the interoperation of UAS with manned aircraft in the National Airspace System (NAS). In FY 2013, the President’s Budget requests $9 million for UAS, including $3.1 million for the Joint Planning and Development Office (JPDO) to  lead efforts with the NextGen partners to formulate and develop a National plan that will achieve the integration of UAS into the NAS, and accelerate strategic decision making on UAS implementation issues.


Our latest statistics show that highway fatalities are at an all time low, but the gains we have made in safety are not enough. The FY 2013 budget request will build upon these successes by focusing on our Nation’s most pressing transportation safety issues.


  • In FY 2010 highway fatalities were the lowest since 1949—and yet over 30,000 lives are still lost each year on our Nation’s highways. Our budget proposes:
  • A record level of investment in safety. Nearly $30 billion in surface transportation safety programs is provided over the next six years—an increase of 137%.
  • A continued emphasis on distracted driving programs. As the technologies of cell phones, GPS and other handheld devices have advanced, distracted driving has emerged as a pressing safety issue. The President’s Budget requests $330 million over six years for distracted driving programs which increase awareness of the issue and incentivize stakeholders to take action.
  • Strengthening the areas that really work. Our highway safety achievements have proven that planning, coordinated strategies, and the strategic use of data saves lives. The FY 2013 budget takes the next steps in safety by creating an office to integrate highway safety planning across the Department using consistent data collection methods and sharing best practices in highway safety.


  • The FY 2013 Budget request proposes a new Pipeline Safety Reform initiative that will expand the oversight of our Nation’s pipeline system.  The President’s Budget requests $12.8 million to hire 120 new inspectors. The Budget also requests $20.8 million in grant funding to work collaboratively with the States on the oversight of interstate and intrastate pipeline facilities.


  • The $1 billion request for NextGen in FY 2013 will ensure that Americans are travelling in an even safer and more efficient airspace. In FY 2013, our implementation of Performance Based Navigation (PBN) will make flying safer by giving pilots approach procedures with three dimensional precision. We will continue to implement the Aviation Safety Information Analysis and Sharing (ASIAS) system, to provide safety management data which will allow FAA to proactively implement preventive measures. In addition, the Tower Flight Data Manager (TFDM) will provide pilots with enhanced surface traffic data for taxiing and take-off.


  • Rail transit provides over four billion passengertrips each year, and safely moves millions of people each day. However, as shown by recent accidents and safety-related incidents, we need to strengthen the existing Federal transit oversight authorities in order to maintain the safe performance of our transit systems. The FY 2013 President’s Budget proposes $45 million to enable the Federal Transit Administration to oversee rail transit safety across America. Funds will be used to develop, promote, and conduct safety oversight activities for rail transit systems nationwide.

Download full report (PDF): US Department of Transportation: Budget Highlights Fiscal Year 2013

About the US Department of Transportation
“The mission of the Department is to:

Serve the United States by ensuring a fast, safe, efficient, accessible and convenient transportation system that meets our vital national interests and enhances the quality of life of the American people, today and into the future.”

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