U.S. DOT says TIGER grants remain in high demand

While transportation infrastructure funding on a federal level continues to be strung along by a series of continuing resolutions to keep federal funding for surface transportation intact at current levels, one area which remains in high demand is the United States Department of Transportation’s TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) grant program.

By ·

While transportation infrastructure funding on a federal level continues to be strung along by a series of continuing resolutions to keep federal funding for surface transportation intact at current levels, one area which remains in high demand is the United States Department of Transportation’s TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) grant program.

The objective of the TIGER program is to ensure that economic funding is rapidly made available for transportation infrastructure projects and that project spending is monitored and transparent.

The DOT said this week that overwhelming demand for TIGER grants has again exceeded the level of available funding, with applications for TIGER 2012 grants at $10.2 billion well above the available $500 million the program has available in its coffers. DOT added that it received 703 applications for TIGER grants from across the country.

“President Obama has challenged us to invest in an America that is built to last, and it’s clear that communities across America can’t afford to wait any longer to get started,” said Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood in a statement.  “At a time when gas prices are high, it’s more important than ever that we invest in projects that will relieve congestion, improve the safety of our transportation systems, and provide Americans with affordable, efficient options for reaching their destinations.”

The federal government has had four rounds of TIGER funding, with the most recent one coming last November through President Obama’s FY 2012 Appropriations Act, which has $500 million for transportation infrastructure projects.

DOT officials added that the first three rounds of TIGER funding were comprised of $2.6 billion to 172 projects in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.  And during the previous three rounds, the DOT said it received more than 3,348 applications requesting more than $95 billion for nationwide transportation projects.

Selection criteria for TIGER grants includes: contributing to the long-term economic competitiveness of the nation; improving the condition of existing transportation facilities and systems; improving energy efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas emissions; improving the safety of U.S. transportation facilities and improving the quality of living and working environments of communities through increased transportation choices and connections.

In a previous interview with LM, Mort Downey, senior advisor at infrastructure firm Parsons-Brinkerhoff, described the TIGER grant award winners as the “cream of the crop.”

The criterion used by the DOT to select projects was fundamentally cost-benefit analysis, and this bodes well for the freight-related projects that were selected. But in order for these projects to be considered successful, Downey said they ultimately need to deliver.

“These grants are important on the job creation front and even more importation on the long-term economic growth front—particularly for the freight projects,” noted Downey. “The freight projects in particular have very large cost-benefit potential and are largely focused on shippers in terms of supply chain efficiency and reducing inventories and [transit time] delays. A lot of these projects were ‘partnership projects’ between entities like railroads and ports, and TIGER money acted as the closer to make these deals work.”


About the Author

Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. Contact Jeff Berman

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Latest Whitepaper
Reduce Order Processing Costs by 80%
Sales order automation software will seamlessly transform inbound emailed and printed purchase orders into electronic sales orders that can be automatically processed into your ERP system with 100% accuracy.
Download Today!
From the June 2016 Issue
In the wildly unstable ocean cargo carrier arena, three major consortia are fighting for market share, with some players simply hanging on for survival. Meanwhile, shippers may expect deployment shifts as a consequence of the Panama Canal expansion.
WMS Update: What do we need to run a WMS?
Supply Chain Software Convergence: Synchronization Realized
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
Optimizing Global Transportation: How NVOCCs Can Use Technology to Operate More Profitably
Global transportation isn't getting any easier to manage, especially for non-vessel operating common carriers (NVOCCs). Faced with uncertainties like surcharges—but needing to remain competitive when bidding against other providers—NVOCCs need the right mix of historical data, data intelligence, and technology support to make quick and effective decisions. During this webcast you'll learn how Bolloré Transport & Logistics was able to streamline its global logistics and automate contract management.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
Details Key to Cross-border Ease
Ever-changing regulations are making it risky for U.S. companies engaged in cross-border trade...
Digital Reality Check
Just how close are we to the ideal digital supply network? Not as close as we might like to think....

Top 25 ports: West Coast continues to dominate
The Panama Canal expansion is set for late June and may soon be attracting more inbound vessel calls...
Port of Oakland launches smart phone apps for harbor truckers
Innovation uses Bluetooth, GPS to measure how long drivers wait for cargo