Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP)
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The program authorizes a new core Federal-aid funding program beginning in FY 2006 to achieve a significant reduction in traffic fatalities and serious injuries on all public roads.
The HSIP emphasizes a data-driven, strategic approach to improving highway safety that focuses on results. Higher funding levels are provided, and the types of projects that can be defined as a highway safety improvement project have been expanded. The HSIP has several major program features; separate fact sheets are available on each of these:
A highway safety improvement project corrects or improves a hazardous road location, or addresses a highway safety problem. To obligate funds under the new Section 148, a state must develop and implement a strategic highway safety plan, produce a program of projects or strategies to reduce safety problems, evaluate the plan on a regular basis, and submit an annual report to the Secretary that describes not less than 5 percent of locations exhibiting the most severe safety needs with a description of the potential remedies, costs and impediments to resolve these safety needs.
*In 2005, safety programs were funded from a setaside from the Surface Transportation Program
Before apportioning HSIP funds, $220M is set-aside for the Railway-Highway Crossing Program under 23 USC 130. The remainder is apportioned to States based on the following factors:
Each State will receive at least ½ of 1 percent of the funds apportioned for the HSIP.
Each State's apportionment of HSIP funds is also subject to a set-aside for construction and operational safety improvements on High-Risk Rural Roads
Eligible Use of Funds
Starting in FY 2006, States with an SHSP that meets the requirements of 23 USC 148 may obligate HSIP funds for all the purposes listed in section 148. Funds may be used for projects on any public road or publicly owned bicycle and pedestrian pathway or trail. Each State must have an SHSP to be eligible to use up to 10 percent of its HSIP funds for other safety projects under 23 USC (including education, enforcement and emergency medical services). It must also certify that it has met its railway-highway crossing and infrastructure safety needs.
States without an SHSP in FY 2006 or any year thereafter will receive safety apportionments that may be used only for projects eligible under 23 USC 130 and 152 (railway-highway crossings, and hazard elimination) as in effect prior to the enactment of SAFETEA-LU.
The Federal share is 90 percent, subject to the sliding scale adjustment, except that the Federal share is 100% for certain safety improvements listed in 23 USC 120(c). SAFETEA-LU §1947 also added "traffic circles" (also known as roundabouts) to the list of improvements that may receive 100% share [under 23 USC 120(c)].
States will administer the HSIP, with appropriate oversight by the Office of Safety and the FHWA Division Office. Further guidance on the High Risk Rural Road Program, Strategic Highway Safety Plans and on the various reporting requirements is currently being developed. Draft guidance documents and fact sheets on these programs are available on the Office of Safety website (as noted below). Regulations will be developed at a later date, based on guidance, feedback, and experience.