White House Requests Budget Increase for FMCSA

Joe Biden
President Joe Biden speaks about his proposed budget for fiscal year 2023 in the State Dining Room of the White House on March 28. (Patrick Semansky/AP)

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The White House’s $5.8 trillion fiscal 2023 budget proposal aims to increase funding for federal trucking regulators.

In President Joe Biden’s latest budget request, unveiled March 28, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s main accounts would see a slight increase over the most recent enacted budget.

For FMCSA’s safety operations and programs, the White House is requesting $367.5 million for fiscal 2023. The budget proposal for the agency’s safety grants division is $506.1 million.

Budget Fy2023 by Transport Topics

For the current fiscal year, FMCSA’s safety operations and programs received $360 million, and the agency’s safety grants division received $496 million.

“The operations and programs account provides the necessary resources to support program and administrative activities for motor carrier safety,” per the budget request. “The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will continue to improve safety and reduce severe and fatal commercial motor vehicle crashes by requiring operators to maintain standards to remain in the industry, and by removing high-risk carriers, vehicles, drivers and service providers from operation.”

Overall, the U.S. Department of Transportation would receive $142 billion. This would include $23.6 billion for aviation modernization programs, $4.45 billion for major transit projects, $3 billion for safety programs at the Federal Highway Administration, $1.5 billion for infrastructure construction grants and $230 million for port projects essential for supply chain connectivity. Additionally, the budget proposes to dedicate $27.5 million to advance the next phase of Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards for light vehicles and maximum fuel efficiency standards for medium- and heavy-duty trucks, according to background the department provided.

“The investments in the president’s budget make traveling safer, easier, cleaner and more affordable for the American people,” Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said. “From roads, tunnels and bridges, to airport and port improvements, electric vehicle chargers, safe bike lanes and more, we are building a first-rate transportation system for all Americans.”

The request, a guiding policy document for Congress’ consideration, proposes more than $11 billion for big-picture climate change programs. The funding aims to realize Biden’s goal of net-zero emissions by 2050. Specific to climate change, the budget would dedicate $17 billion for climate science and innovation programs.

The request also seeks to respond to supply chain disruptions. This includes dedicating $1 billion for a Department of Energy program that would facilitate resilient supply chains.

“Budgets are statements of values, and the budget I am releasing today sends a clear message that we value fiscal responsibility, safety and security at home and around the world, and the investments needed to continue our equitable growth and build a better America,” Biden said March 28. “All told, it is a budget that includes historic deficit reduction, historic investments in our security at home and abroad, and an unprecedented commitment to building an economy where everyone has a chance to succeed.”

The American Public Transportation Association was among the stakeholders supportive of the president’s latest budget request, emphasizing directives that would fund programs approved in the $1 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.

“Providing the necessary investment to modernize our public transit and passenger rail systems will allow systems across the country to meet growing community demands for increased mobility choices that will reap economic and environmental benefits nationwide,” APTA President and CEO Paul Skoutelas said. “Combined with the advance appropriations in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, the president’s [fiscal year] 2023 budget request will provide historic and generational investments in public transportation that will enable our communities to provide access to opportunities and create family-wage jobs, advance equity, and tackle climate change.”

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