Section 402 Highway Safety Funds
Highway Safety Funds are used to support State and community programs to reduce deaths and injuries on the highways. Section 402(b) sets forth the minimum requirements with which each State's highway safety program must comply.
Section 402(b) sets forth the minimum requirements with which each State's highway safety program must comply. For example, the Secretary may not approve a program unless it provides that the Governor of the State is responsible for its administration through a State highway safety agency which has adequate powers and is suitably equipped and organized to carry out the program to the satisfaction of the Secretary. Additionally, the program must authorize political subdivisions of the State to carry out local highway safety programs and provide a certain minimum level of funding for these local programs each fiscal year. The enforcement of these and other continuing requirements is entrusted to the Secretary and, by delegation, to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) (the agencies).
When it was originally enacted in 1966, the Highway Safety Act required the agencies to establish uniform standards for State highway safety programs to assist States and local communities in implementing their highway safety programs. Eighteen such standards were established and, until 1976, the Section 402 program was directed principally toward achieving State and local compliance with these standards. Over time, State highway safety programs matured and, in 1976, the Highway Safety Act was amended to provide for more flexible implementation of the program. States were no longer required to comply with every uniform standard or with each element of every uniform standard. As a result, the standards became more like guidelines for use by the States, and management of the program shifted from enforcing standards to using the standards as a framework for problem identification, countermeasure development, and program evaluation. In 1987, Section 402 of the Highway Safety Act was amended, formally changing the standards to guidelines.
State and Community Highway Safety Grant Program
Highway Safety Funds are used to support State and community programs to reduce deaths and injuries on the highways. In each State, funds are administered by the Governor's Representative for Highway Safety. Pedestrian Safety has been identified as a National Priority Area and is therefore eligible for Section 402 funds. Section 402 funds can be used for a variety of safety initiatives including conducting data analyses, developing safety education programs, and conducting community-wide pedestrian safety campaigns. Since the 402 Program is jointly administered by NHTSA and FHWA, Highway Safety Funds can also be used for some limited safety-related engineering projects.
Additional information is available from the following web sites:
Section 2001 of TEA-21 reauthorizes the State and Community Highway Safety formula grant program (Section 402 of chapter 4 of Title 23) to support State highway safety programs, designed to reduce traffic crashes and resulting deaths, injuries, and property damage. A state may use these grant funds only for highway safety purposes; at least 40 percent of these funds are to be used to address local traffic safety problems.
A State is eligible for these formula grants by submitting a Performance Plan, which establishes goals and performance measures to improve highway safety in the State, and a Highway Safety Plan, which describes activities to achieve those goals. TEA-21 revises the periodic rulemaking process used to determine national priority program areas, from one requiring States to direct resources to fixed program areas identified by the rulemaking, to one directing that the States consider such highly effective programs when developing their State highway safety program plans.
For purposes of this section, those jurisdictions defined as “States” in chapter 4 of Title 23 are eligible to receive Section 405 funds; this includes the 50 States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
Implementing Your Program
For information on how to apply for Section 402 Highway Safety Funds, contact your Governor's Representative for Highway Safety. A listing is available at: http://www.ghsa.org/html/links/highwaysafetywebsites.html
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