Introduction

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This is the annual report called for by 49 U.S.C. 5309(m)(3) (formerly Section 3(j) of the Federal Transit Act [FT Act]) which requires a "proposal on the allocation of amounts to be made available to finance grants and loans for capital projects for new fixed guideway systems and extensions to existing fixed guideway systems among applicants for those amounts."

The purpose of this report is to describe the Department's recommendations for allocating the funds for New Starts under §5309 (Section 3). New fixed guideway systems and extensions (e.g., a light rail line, a subway line or a busway/high occupancy vehicle (HOV) facility) are referred to in this document as "New Starts" and are considered to be major capital investments.

This report is a collateral document to the proposed FY 1997 budget submitted by the President. It is meant to be a constructive element in the administration of the Federal transit assistance program, enriching the information exchange between the Executive and Legislative Branches at the beginning of the appropriations cycle for the next fiscal year.

This report is now available on the Internet via the World Wide Web. The Universal Resource Locator (URL) address for the FTA home page is: http://www.fta.dot.gov. Multimedia and text-­only options are available. For information on the availability of other alternative formats, please contact the FTA Office of Public Affairs.

FY 1997 Budget Proposal

While 49 U.S.C. 5301 et seq.(FT Act) authorizes funding for FTA programs, the annual appropriations process actually sets the amount of funds which can be obligated in any fiscal year. The President's budget for FY 1997 proposes $800.00 million for New Starts.

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