Nationally Significant Freight and Highway Projects

The Nationally Significant Freight and Highway Projects (NSFHP) program will provide Federal financial assistance to projects of national or regional significance.


Examples of Funded Projects

Fiscal Year 2016: On September 7, 2016, Secretary Anthony Foxx awarded $759.2 million to 18 projects across the nation.

For example, $42 million was awarded to the Massachusetts Port Authority for the Conley Terminal and Intermodal Improvements and Modernization Project.

Fiscal Year 2017: To date, 12 of the 18 projects awarded on September 7, 2016 have been obligated.

Fiscal Year 2018: Anticipates the remaining 6 projects will have funding obligated before September 30, 2018.


Agency - Department of Transportation

The Department of Transportation's mission is to ensure fast, safe, efficient, accessible and convenient transportation that meets vital national interests and enhances the quality of life of the American people, today and into the future.

Office - See Regional Agency Offices.

For more information about highway projects, please contact Crystal Jones at (202) 366-2976.

For more information about maritime projects, please contact Robert Bouchard at (202) 366-5076.

For more information about rail projects, please contact Scott Greene at (202) 493-6408.

For all other questions, please contact Howard Hill at (202) 366-0301.

A TDD is available for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing at 202-366-3993.



Program Accomplishments

Fiscal Year 2016: On September 7, 2016, Secretary Anthony Foxx awarded $759.2 million to 18 projects across the nation. For example, $42 million was awarded to the Massachusetts Port Authority for the Conley Terminal and Intermodal Improvements and Modernization Project. Fiscal Year 2017: To date, 12 of the 18 projects awarded on September 7, 2016 have been obligated. Fiscal Year 2018: Anticipates the remaining 6 projects will have funding obligated before September 30, 2018.

Uses and Use Restrictions

The FAST Act authorizes the Nationally Significant Freight and Highway Projects program at $4.5 billion for fiscal years (FY) 2016 through 2020, including $800 million for FY 2016 to be awarded by DOT on a competitive basis to projects of national or regional significance that meet statutory requirements.

NSFHP grants may be used for the construction, reconstruction, rehabilitation, acquisition of property (including land related to the project and improvements to the land), environmental mitigation, construction contingencies, equipment acquisition, and operational improvements directly related to system performance.

NSFHP grants may also fund developmental phase activities, including planning, feasibility analysis, revenue forecasting, environmental review, preliminary engineering, design, and other preconstruction activities, provided the project meets statutory requirements including that they are based on the results of preliminary engineering.

All projects funded with NSFHP grants must be reasonably expected to begin construction not later than 18 months after the date funds are obligated for the project.

The Department will divide grants under the NSFHP program into large and small projects.

For large projects, the FAST Act specifies that NSFHP grants must be at least $25 million.

For small projects, the grants must be at least $5 million.

For both large and small projects, maximum NSFHP awards may not exceed 60 percent of future eligible project costs.

Ten percent of available funds, approximately $76 million in FY 2016, are reserved for small projects.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to submit applications only for eligible award amounts.

Pursuant to the FAST Act, not more than $500 million in aggregate of the $4.5 billion authorized for NSFHP grants over fiscal years 2016 to 2020 may be used for grants to freight rail, water (including ports), or other freight intermodal projects that make significant improvements to freight movement on the National Highway Freight Network.

Only the non-highway portion(s) of multimodal projects count toward the $500 million maximum.

Improving freight movement on the National Highway Freight Network may include shifting freight transportation to other modes, thereby reducing congestion and bottlenecks on the National Highway Freight Network.

The Federal share for projects that count toward the $500 million maximum may fund only elements of the project that provide public benefit.

Grade crossing and grade separation projects do not count toward the $500 million maximum for freight rail, port, and intermodal projects.

The FAST Act directs at least 25 percent of the funds provided for NSFHP grants, $190 million in FY 2016, are to be used for projects located in rural areas, as defined in Section C.3.iv.

If the Department does not receive enough qualified applications to fully award the 25 percent reserved for rural projects, the Department may use the excess funding for non-rural awards.

DOT must consider geographic diversity among grant recipients, including the need for a balance in addressing the needs of urban and rural areas.

The FAST Act allows an NSFHP grant recipient to use NSFHP funds granted to pay the subsidy and administrative costs necessary to receive credit assistance for the associated project under the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act of 1998 (?TIFIA?) program.

NSFHP Funding is limited to the list of eligible applicants for eligible projects as described in Section 1105 of the FAST Act.

$800 million in NSFHP Funding is 100% Discretionary Grant Funding.

The FAST Act allows an NSFHP grant recipient to use NSFHP funds granted to pay the subsidy and administrative costs necessary to receive credit assistance for the associated project under the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act of 1998 (?TIFIA?) program.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Eligible applicants for NSFHP grants are 1) a State or group of States; 2) a metropolitan planning organization that serves an urbanized area (as defined by the Bureau of the Census) with a population of more than 200,000 individuals; 3) a unit of local government or group of local governments; 4) a political subdivision of a State or local government; 5) a special purpose district or public authority with a transportation function, including a port authority; 6) a Federal land management agency that applies jointly with a State or group of States; 7) a tribal government or a consortium of tribal governments; or 8) a multi-State or multijurisdictional group of public entities.

Multiple States or jurisdictions that submit a joint application must identify a lead applicant as the primary point of contact.

Each applicant in a joint application must be an Eligible Applicant.

Joint applications must include a description of the roles and responsibilities of each applicant and must be signed by each applicant.

Beneficiary Eligibility

Eligible applicants for NSFHP grants are 1) a State or group of States; 2) a metropolitan planning organization that serves an urbanized area (as defined by the Bureau of the Census) with a population of more than 200,000 individuals; 3) a unit of local government or group of local governments; 4) a political subdivision of a State or local government; 5) a special purpose district or public authority with a transportation function, including a port authority; 6) a Federal land management agency that applies jointly with a State or group of States; 7) a tribal government or a consortium of tribal governments; or 8) a multi-State or multijurisdictional group of public entities. Multiple States or jurisdictions that submit a joint application must identify a lead applicant as the primary point of contact. Each applicant in a joint application must be an Eligible Applicant. Joint applications must include a description of the roles and responsibilities of each applicant and must be signed by each applicant.

Credentials/Documentation

To submit an application through Grants.gov, applicants must: Obtain a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number; Register with the System Award for Management (SAM) at www.sam.gov; Create a Grants.gov username and password; and The E-business Point of Contact (POC) at the applicant?s organization must respond to the registration email from Grants.gov and login at Grants.gov to authorize the POC as an Authorized Organization Representative (AOR). Please note that there can only be one AOR per organization. 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles applies to this program.

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

Preapplication coordination is required.

An environmental impact statement is required for this program.

An environmental impact assessment is required for this program.

This program is eligible for coverage under E.O.

12372, 'Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs.' An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.

Application Procedures

2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. Complete applications for the Nationally Significant Freight and Highway Projects program must be submitted no later than 60 days after the Notice of Funding Opportunity is published in the Federal Register (the ??Application Deadline??). While applicants are encouraged to submit applications in advance of the Application Deadline, applications will not be evaluated, and awards will not be made, until after the Application Deadline. Due to the need to expedite the grant award process to meet the requirements and purposes of the Fast Act (as defined below), the Department will evaluate all applications and announce the projects that have been selected to receive Grant Funds (as defined below) as soon as possible after the Application Deadline, but no later than September 30, 2016. In addition, in the event that this solicitation does not result in the award and obligation of all available funds, the Department may decide to publish an additional solicitation.

Award Procedures

The FAST Act authorizes the NSFHP program at $4.5 billion for fiscal years (FY) 2016 through 2020, including $800 million for FY 2016 to be awarded by DOT on a competitive basis to projects of national or regional significance that meet statutory requirements. NSFHP grants may be used for the construction, reconstruction, rehabilitation, acquisition of property (including land related to the project and improvements to the land), environmental mitigation, construction contingencies, equipment acquisition, and operational improvements directly related to system performance. NSFHP grants may also fund developmental phase activities, including planning, feasibility analysis, revenue forecasting, environmental review, preliminary engineering, design, and other preconstruction activities, provided the project meets statutory requirements including that they are based on the results of preliminary engineering. All projects funded with NSFHP grants must be reasonably expected to begin construction not later than 18 months after the date funds are obligated for the project.

Deadlines

Jun 29, 2017 to Nov 02, 2017: Projects will be awarded NSFHP funding no later than September 30, 2018.

Authorization

The Fixing America?s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act), Section 1105?Nationally Significant Freight and Highway Projects (NSFHP) program, Pub. L. 114-94, section 1105 (23 U.S.C. 117)., Public Law 114-94, 23 U.S.C 117.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Start Date: Notice of Funding Opportunity published no later than June 29, 2017 Application Deadline: Applications are due on or before November 2, 2017. End Date: Projects will be awarded NSFHP funding no later than September 30, 2018.

Appeals

Not Applicable.

Renewals

Not Applicable.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

Statutory Formula: Title 23, Chapter 202, Part 117, Public Law 114-94 section 1105. NSFHP grants may be used for up to 60 percent of future eligible project costs. Other Federal assistance may satisfy the non-Federal share requirement for an NSFHP grant, but total Federal assistance for a project receiving an NSFHP grant may not exceed 80 percent of the future eligible project costs. Unless otherwise authorized in statute, local cost-share that exceed the 80 percent Federal-share maximum will not be considered matching funds if the source of those funds is ultimately a Federal program. Non-Federal sources include State funds originating from programs funded by State revenue, local funds originating from State or local revenue funded programs, private funds or other funding sources of non-Federal origins. Funds from the Tribal Transportation Program (23 U.S.C. 202), TIFIA, a Federal land management agency, or other Federal source that is expressly authorized in statute may be used for the non-Federal share. Unless otherwise authorized in statute, local cost-share may not be counted as non-Federal share for both the NSFHP and another Federal program. For any project, the Department cannot consider previously incurred costs or previously expended or encumbered funds towards the matching requirement. Matching funds are subject to the same Federal requirements as awarded funds. Matching Requirements: Percent: 20%. NSFHP grants may be used for up to 60 percent of future eligible project costs. Other Federal assistance may satisfy the non-Federal share requirement for an NSFHP grant, but total Federal assistance for a project receiving an NSFHP grant may not exceed 80 percent of the future eligible project costs. Unless otherwise authorized in statute, local cost-share that exceed the 80 percent Federal-share maximum will not be considered matching funds if the source of those funds is ultimately a Federal program. Non-Federal sources include State funds originating from programs funded by State revenue, local funds originating from State or local revenue funded programs, private funds or other funding sources of non-Federal origins. Funds from the Tribal Transportation Program (23 U.S.C. 202), TIFIA, a Federal land management agency, or other Federal source that is expressly authorized in statute may be used for the non-Federal share. Unless otherwise authorized in statute, local cost-share may not be counted as non-Federal share for both the NSFHP and another Federal program. For any project, the Department cannot consider previously incurred costs or previously expended or encumbered funds towards the matching requirement. Matching funds are subject to the same Federal requirements as awarded funds. This program has MOE requirements, see funding agency for further details.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

FY 2016 NSFHP Funding was awarded no later than September 30, 2016. Once awarded, the Department must obligate the awarded funding no later than September 30, 2019. Once the NSFHP Funding is obligated, the project sponsor will have until September 30, 2024, to expend all of the NSFHP awarded. See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: Funding can be awarded through the approval of an allocation of funding to a State Department of Transportation, a metropolitan planning organization, or through the successful execution of a grant agreement.

Post Assistance Requirements

Reports

The FAST Act requires the Department of Transportation to produce an annual report at the end of each fiscal year that lists each project for which a grant has been provided under Section 1105 of the FAST Act.

Cash reports are not applicable.

Progress reports are not applicable.

Expenditure reports are not applicable.

Performance monitoring is not applicable.

Audits

In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503.

Records

Any awarding procedures, documentation of expenditures and copies of reports as well as policies and procedures for the life of the grant.

Financial Information

Account Identification

69-0170-0-1-401.

Obigations

(Project Grants) FY 16 $759,200,000; FY 17 est $788,880,000; and FY 18 est $0 - The FAST Act authorizes the NSFHP program at $4.5 billion for fiscal years (FY) 2016 through 2020, including $800 million for FY 2016 to be awarded by DOT on a competitive basis to projects of national or regional significance that meet statutory requirements.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

Not Applicable.

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

See Regional Agency Offices. For more information about highway projects, please contact Crystal Jones at (202) 366-2976. For more information about maritime projects, please contact Robert Bouchard at (202) 366-5076. For more information about rail projects, please contact Scott Greene at (202) 493-6408. For all other questions, please contact Howard Hill at (202) 366-0301. A TDD is available for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing at 202-366-3993.

Headquarters Office

Howard Hill U.S. Department of Transportation, Office of the Secretary of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE, , Washington, District of Columbia 20590 Email: NSFHP@dot.gov Phone: (202) 366-7687

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

The selection criteria for applications submitted under the NSFHP program will be provided in the Notice of Funding Opportunity that will be published in the Federal Register no later than March 1, 2016.



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