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Federal Grants to Amtrak

FRA executes and oversees grant agreements with the National Railroad Passenger Corporation (Amtrak) to provide Amtrak with federal funds appropriated by Congress. In conjunction with operating revenues and funds from states, local governments, and other entities, Amtrak uses federal funds for a wide range of its operating and capital activities, including a portion of its operating expenses, capital maintenance of fleet and infrastructure, capital expansion and investment programs, and capital debt repayment.

The Department of Transportation, through its annual budget submission, and Amtrak, through its annual Grant and Legislative Request, provide Congress with recommended appropriation amounts.

The Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act of 2015 (FAST Act) modified parts of the process used to provide federal appropriations to Amtrak. Previously, Amtrak’s annual federal funding was provided as an operating grant and a capital and debt service grant. Beginning with FY 2017, and as a result of the FAST Act, Amtrak’s federal grants will align with Amtrak’s new Account Structure (Sec. 11201 of the FAST Act), with one grant to the Northeast Corridor Account and one to the National Network Account.

The table below shows Amtrak's federal appropriations since its creation through FY 2016, combining both operating and capital grants. The amount includes $3,937.3 million spent by FRA on the Northeast Corridor Improvement Project between 1976 and 1998, though not any federal loans or loan guarantees. This amount excludes an additional $1.3 billion in capital funds appropriated for Amtrak in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA).

 
Fiscal YearAnnual Total
$ millions
1971-72 $40.0
1973 $170.0
1974 $140.0
1975 $276.5
1976 (incl. transition quarter to new fiscal calendar) $651.2
1977 $800.7
1978 $1,116.0
1979 $1,269.0
1980 $1,244.4
1981 $1,256.3
1982 $905.0
1983 $895.0
1984 $816.4
1985 $711.6
1986 $602.7
1987 $624.0
1988 $608.4
1989 $603.6
1990 $629.1
1991 $815.1
1992 $856.0
1993 $891.1
1994 $908.7
1995 $972.0
1996 $750.0
1997 $843.0
1998 $1,686.0
1999 $1,701.2
2000 $571.0
2001 $520.3
2002 (incl. $205 mid-year supplemental) $831.5
2003 $1,043.2
2004 $1,217.8
2005 $1,207.3
2006 $1,293.6
2007 $1,293.6
2008 $1,325.0
2009 $1,490.0
2010 $1,565.0
2011 $1,483.7
2012 $1,418.0
2013 $1,344.0
2014 $1,390.0
2015 $1,390.0
2016 $1,385.0
 
SOURCE - FRA Records

 Updated: December 7, 2016

See Also

Amtrak Website

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