TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Florida will receive $2.65 billion from the federal government to pay for infrastructure enhancements and repairs. The funding, part of a larger funding plan created through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, will dole out funds to all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration announced the funding level for Florida for Fiscal Year 2023, which will give money for “investment in critical infrastructure, including roads, bridges and tunnels, carbon emission reduction, and safety improvements.”
The funding “will go directly to Florida” giving the state’s transportation leaders “flexibility” with how to rebuild roads and bridges and help to make transportation systems “more efficient,” according to a release by USDOT.
The department published the following breakdown of investment opportunities for Florida for FY2023.
|National Highway Performance Program||$1,447,641,141|
|Surface Transportation Block Grant||$704,257,853|
|Highway Safety Improvement Program||$154,148,047|
|Railway-Highway Crossings Program||$10,004,119|
|Congestion Mitigation & Air Quality Program||$15,112,014|
|National Highway Freight Program||$67,021,795|
|Carbon Reduction Program||$62,796,325|
|PROTECT Formula Program||$71,403,921|
|National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Program||$42,185,251|
|Bridge Formula Program||$52,673,067|
“America’s roads and bridges are the vital arteries of our transportation system, connecting people and goods across the country,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg in a statement. “Because of President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, today we are sending historic levels of funding to every state to help modernize the roads and bridges Americans rely on every day.”
According to the USDOT, Florida will get nearly $52.7 million for just bridge-related needs. The announcement said there were 455 bridges in need of repair, preservation due to their rating as “in poor condition.”
An additional 4,415 bridges in Florida are “in fair condition in the state” and “at risk of falling into poor condition,” according to USDOT.
As of 2022’s bridge inventory report from the Florida Department of Transportation, there were 12,745 bridge structures in their management system. Statewide, FDOT reported 1,709 bridges were functionally obsolete.
For the Tampa Bay area, 84 bridges in FDOT District 7, made up of Citrus, Hernando, Hillsborough, Pasco, and Pinellas counties, that were rated fair or poor. In FDOT District 1, which includes Hardee, Highlands, Manatee, Polk, and Sarasota counties from the Tampa Bay area, there were 158 bridges in poor or fair condition. However, other counties are included in the district, meaning not all of the bridges in need of repair are in Tampa Bay counties.
“Formula programs give states the flexibility they need to determine how to allocate funds in order to replace deficient bridges, improve safety for all road users, and reduce carbon emissions by improving transportation infrastructure for communities throughout each state,” Acting Federal Highway Administrator Stephanie Pollack said in a statement. “This funding we are announcing today will allow states to continue the important work of President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that will make our infrastructure safer and more efficient for the tens of millions of American families that count on it to get to school, work, and critical medical care every day.”
Previous announcements by the White House following President Joe Biden’s signing of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act said most of the money for infrastructure development would be delivered over five years. Estimates published shortly after the bill was signed into law put the investment at about $22.6 billion, for Florida.
Additionally, Florida will also be able to compete for portions of “the $12.5 billion Bridge Investment Program for economically significant bridges and nearly $16 billion of national funding in the bill dedicated for major projects that will deliver substantial economic benefits to communities.”
Nationally, the FY2023 funding to be delivered to states will be close to $60 billion, according to USDOT. It’s a reported $15.4 billion increase from the funding in the 2021 fiscal year. The money from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will be distributed each year by FHWA, using formulas required by Congressional mandate.
USDOT describes the funds as “authorized periodically by Congress in multi-year laws to assist the States in providing for construction, reconstruction, and improvement of highways and bridges on eligible Federal-aid routes and for other special purpose programs and projects.”
It said the new infrastructure law “established or continued” programs from FHWA from the Highway Trust Fund and General Fund. A full list of bridges in Florida, with condition ratings, locations, and management agencies can be found from FDOT online.
Click here for a list of all of the bridges in the Tampa Bay area with structurally deficient or functionally obsolete ratings from FDOT.