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Sec. 9503 Highway Trust Fund

  • Internal Revenue Code of 1986
  • SUBTITLE I -- TRUST FUND CODE
  • Chapter 98 -- Trust Fund Code
  • Subchapter A -- Establishment of Trust Funds

(a) Creation of Trust Fund. There is established in the Treasury of the United States a trust fund to be known as the "Highway Trust Fund", consisting of such amounts as may be appropriated or credited to the Highway Trust Fund as provided in this section or section 9602(b).

(b) Transfer to Highway Trust Fund of amounts equivalent to certain taxes and penalties.

(1) Certain taxes. There are hereby appropriated to the Highway Trust Fund amounts equivalent to the taxes received in the Treasury before October 1, 2028, under the following provisions--

(A) section 4041 (relating to taxes on diesel fuels and special motor fuels),

(B) section 4051 (relating to retail tax on heavy trucks and trailers),

(C) section 4071 (relating to tax on tires),

(D) section 4081 (relating to tax on gasoline, diesel fuel, and kerosene), and

(E) section 4481 (relating to tax on use of certain vehicles).

For purposes of this paragraph, taxes received under sections 4041 and 4081 shall be determined without reduction for credits under section 6426 and taxes received under section 4081 shall be determined without regard to tax receipts attributable to the rate specified in section 4081(a)(2)(C).

(2) Liabilities incurred before October 1, 2028. There are hereby appropriated to the Highway Trust Fund amounts equivalent to the taxes which are received in the Treasury after September 30, 2028, and before July 1, 2029, and which are attributable to liability for tax incurred before October 1, 2028, under the provisions described in paragraph (1).

(3) [Repealed by P.L. 109-59]

(4) Certain taxes not transferred to Highway Trust Fund. For purposes of paragraphs (1) and (2), there shall not be taken into account the taxes imposed by--

(A) section 4041(d),

(B) section 4081 to the extent attributable to the rate specified in section 4081(a)(2)(B),

(C) section 4041 or 4081 to the extent attributable to fuel used in a train, or

(D) in the case of gasoline and special motor fuels used as described in paragraph (3)(D) or (4)(B) of subsection (c), section 4041 or 4081 with respect to so much of the rate of tax as exceeds--

(i) 11.5 cents per gallon with respect to taxes imposed before October 1, 2001,

(ii) 13 cents per gallon with respect to taxes imposed after September 30, 2001, and before October 1, 2003, and

(iii) 13.5 cents per gallon with respect to taxes imposed after September 30, 2003, and before October 1, 2005.

(5) Certain penalties.

(A) In general. There are hereby appropriated to the Highway Trust Fund amounts equivalent to the penalties paid under sections 6715, 6715A, 6717, 6718, 6719, 6720A, 6725, 7232, and 7272 (but only with regard to penalties under such section related to failure to register under section 4101).

(B) Penalties related to motor vehicle safety.

(i) In general. There are hereby appropriated to the Highway Trust Fund amounts equivalent to covered motor vehicle safety penalty collections.

(ii) Covered motor vehicle safety penalty collections. For purposes of this subparagraph, the term "covered motor vehicle safety penalty collections" means any amount collected in connection with a civil penalty under section 30165 of title 49, United States Code, reduced by any award authorized by the Secretary of Transportation to be paid to any person in connection with information provided by such person related to a violation of chapter 301 of such title which is a predicate to such civil penalty.

(6) Limitation on transfers to Highway Trust Fund.

(A) In general. Except as provided in subparagraph (B), no amount may be appropriated to the Highway Trust Fund on and after the date of any expenditure from the Highway Trust Fund which is not permitted by this section. The determination of whether an expenditure is so permitted shall be made without regard to--

(i) any provision of law which is not contained or referenced in this title or in a revenue Act, and

(ii) whether such provision of law is a subsequently enacted provision or directly or indirectly seeks to waive the application of this paragraph.

(B) Exception for prior obligations. Subparagraph (A) shall not apply to any expenditure to liquidate any contract entered into (or for any amount otherwise obligated) before October 1, 2026, in accordance with the provisions of this section.

(c) Expenditures from Highway Trust Fund.

(1) Federal-aid highway program. Except as provided in subsection (e), amounts in the Highway Trust Fund shall be available, as provided by appropriation Acts, for making expenditures before October 1, 2026, to meet those obligations of the United States heretofore or hereafter incurred which are authorized to be paid out of the Highway Trust Fund under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act or any other provision of law which was referred to in this paragraph before the date of the enactment of such Act (as such Act and provisions of law are in effect on the date of the enactment of such Act).

(2) Floor stocks refunds. The Secretary shall pay from time to time from the Highway Trust Fund into the general fund of the Treasury amounts equivalent to the floor stocks refunds made before July 1, 2029, under section 6412(a). The amounts payable from the Highway Trust Fund under the preceding sentence shall be determined by taking into account only the portion of the taxes which are deposited into the Highway Trust Fund.

(3) Transfers from the Trust Fund for motorboat fuel taxes.

(A) Transfer to Land and Water Conservation Fund.

(i) In general. The Secretary shall pay from time to time from the Highway Trust Fund into the land and water conservation fund provided for in chapter 2003 of title 54 amounts (as determined by the Secretary) equivalent to the motorboat fuel taxes received on or after October 1, 2005, and before October 1, 2028.

(ii) Limitation. The aggregate amount transferred under this subparagraph during any fiscal year shall not exceed $1,000,000.

(B) Excess funds transferred to Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund. Any amounts in the Highway Trust Fund--

(i) which are attributable to motorboat fuel taxes, and

(ii) which are not transferred from the Highway Trust Fund under subparagraph (A),

shall be transferred by the Secretary from the Highway Trust Fund into the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund.

(C) Motorboat fuel taxes. For purposes of this paragraph, the term "motorboat fuel taxes" means the taxes under section 4041(a)(2) with respect to special motor fuels used as fuel in motorboats and under section 4081 with respect to gasoline used as fuel in motorboats, but only to the extent such taxes are deposited into the Highway Trust Fund.

(D) Determination. The amount of payments made under this paragraph after October 1, 1986 shall be determined by the Secretary in accordance with the methodology described in the Treasury Department's Report to Congress of June 1986 entitled "Gasoline Excise Tax Revenues Attributable to Fuel Used in Recreational Motorboats."

(4) Transfers from the Trust Fund for small-engine fuel taxes.

(A) In general. The Secretary shall pay from time to time from the Highway Trust Fund into the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund amounts (as determined by him) equivalent to the small-engine fuel taxes received on or after December 1, 1990, and before October 1, 2028.

(B) Small-engine fuel taxes. For purposes of this paragraph, the term "small-engine fuel taxes" means the taxes under section 4081 with respect to gasoline used as a fuel in the nonbusiness use of small-engine outdoor power equipment, but only to the extent such taxes are deposited into the Highway Trust Fund.

(5) Transfers from the Trust Fund for certain aviation fuel taxes. The Secretary shall pay at least monthly from the Highway Trust Fund into the Airport and Airway Trust Fund amounts (as determined by the Secretary) equivalent to the taxes received on or after October 1, 2005, under section 4081 with respect to so much of the rate of tax as does not exceed--

(A) 4.3 cents per gallon of kerosene subject to section 6427(l)(4)(A) with respect to which a payment has been made by the Secretary under section 6427(l), and

(B) 21.8 cents per gallon of kerosene subject to section 6427(l)(4)(B) with respect to which a payment has been made by the Secretary under section 6427(l).

Transfers under the preceding sentence shall be made on the basis of estimates by the Secretary, and proper adjustments shall be made in the amounts subsequently transferred to the extent prior estimates were in excess of or less than the amounts required to be transferred. Any amount allowed as a credit under section 34 by reason of paragraph (4) of section 6427(l) shall be treated for purposes of subparagraphs (A) and (B) as a payment made by the Secretary under such paragraph.

(d) Adjustments of apportionments.

(1) Estimates of unfunded highway authorizations and net highway receipts. The Secretary of the Treasury, not less frequently than once in each calendar quarter, after consultation with the Secretary of Transportation, shall estimate--

(A) the amount which would (but for this subsection) be the unfunded highway authorizations at the close of the next fiscal year, and

(B) the net highway receipts for the 48-month period beginning at the close of such fiscal year.

(2) Procedure where there is excess unfunded highway authorizations. If the Secretary of the Treasury determines for any fiscal year that the amount described in paragraph (1)(A) exceeds the amount described in paragraph (1)(B)--

(A) he shall so advise the Secretary of Transportation, and

(B) he shall further advise the Secretary of Transportation as to the amount of such excess.

(3) Adjustment of apportionments where unfunded authorizations exceed 4 years' receipts.

(A) Determination of percentage. If, before any apportionment to the States is made, in the most recent estimate made by the Secretary of the Treasury there is an excess referred to in paragraph (2)(B), the Secretary of Transportation shall determine the percentage which--

(i) the excess referred to in paragraph (2)(B), is of

(ii) the amount authorized to be appropriated from the Trust Fund for the fiscal year for apportionment to the States.

If, but for this sentence, the most recent estimate would be one which was made on a date which will be more than 3 months before the date of the apportionment, the Secretary of the Treasury shall make a new estimate under paragraph (1) for the appropriate fiscal year.

(B) Adjustment of apportionments. If the Secretary of Transportation determines a percentage under subparagraph (A) for purposes of any apportionment, notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary of Transportation shall apportion to the States (in lieu of the amount which, but for the provisions of this subsection, would be so apportioned) the amount obtained by reducing the amount authorized to be so apportioned by such percentage.

(4) Apportionment of amounts previously withheld from apportionment. If, after funds have been withheld from apportionment under paragraph (3)(B), the Secretary of the Treasury determines that the amount described in paragraph (1)(A) does not exceed the amount described in paragraph (1)(B) or that the excess described in paragraph (1)(B) is less than the amount previously determined, he shall so advise the Secretary of Transportation. The Secretary of Transportation shall apportion to the States such portion of the funds so withheld from apportionment as the Secretary of the Treasury has advised him may be so apportioned without causing the amount described in paragraph (1)(A) to exceed the amount described in paragraph (1)(B). Any funds apportioned pursuant to the preceding sentence shall remain available for the period for which they would be available if such apportionment took effect with the fiscal year in which they are apportioned pursuant to the preceding sentence.

(5) Definitions. For purposes of this subsection--

(A) Unfunded highway authorizations. The term "unfunded highway authorizations" means, at any time, the excess (if any) of--

(i) the total potential unpaid commitments at such time as a result of the apportionment to the States of the amounts authorized to be appropriated from the Highway Trust Fund, over

(ii) the amount available in the Highway Trust Fund at such time to defray such commitments (after all other unpaid commitments at such time which are payable from the Highway Trust Fund have been defrayed).

(B) Net highway receipts. The term "net highway receipts" means, with respect to any period, the excess of--

(i) the receipts (including interest) of the Highway Trust Fund during such period, over

(ii) the amounts to be transferred during such period from such Fund under subsection (c) (other than paragraph (1) thereof).

(6) Measurement of net highway receipts. For purposes of making any estimate under paragraph (1) of net highway receipts for periods ending after the date specified in subsection (b)(1), the Secretary shall treat--

(A) each expiring provision of subsection (b) which is related to appropriations or transfers to the Highway Trust Fund to have been extended through the end of the 48-month period referred to in paragraph (1)(B), and

(B) with respect to each tax imposed under the sections referred to in subsection (b)(1), the rate of such tax during the 48-month period referred to in paragraph (1)(B) to be the same as the rate of such tax as in effect on the date of such estimate.

(7) Reports. Any estimate under paragraph (1) and any determination under paragraph (2) shall be reported by the Secretary of the Treasury to the Committee on Ways and Means of the House of Representatives, the Committee on Finance of the Senate, the Committees on the Budget of both Houses, the Committee on Public Works and Transportation of the House of Representatives, and the Committee on Environment and Public Works of the Senate.

(e) Establishment of Mass Transit Account.

(1) Creation of account. There is established in the Highway Trust Fund a separate account to be known as the "Mass Transit Account" consisting of such amounts as may be transferred or credited to the Mass Transit Account as provided in this section or section 9602(b).

(2) Transfers to Mass Transit Account. The Secretary of the Treasury shall transfer to the Mass Transit Account the mass transit portion of the amounts appropriated to the Highway Trust Fund under subsection (b) which are attributable to taxes under sections 4041 and 4081 imposed after March 31, 1983. For purposes of the preceding sentence, the term "mass transit portion" means, for any fuel with respect to which tax was imposed under section 4041 or 4081 and otherwise deposited into the Highway Trust Fund, the amount determined at the rate of--

(A) except as otherwise provided in this sentence, 2.86 cents per gallon,

(B) 1.43 cents per gallon in the case of any partially exempt methanol or ethanol fuel (as defined in section 4041(m)) none of the alcohol in which consists of ethanol,

(C) 1.86 cents per energy equivalent of a gallon of diesel (as defined in section 4041(a)(2)(D)) in the case of liquefied natural gas,

(D) 2.13 cents per energy equivalent of a gallon of gasoline (as defined in section 4041(a)(2)(C)) in the case of liquefied petroleum gas, and

(E) 9.71 cents per MCF (determined at standard temperature and pressure) in the case of compressed natural gas.

(3) Expenditures from Account. Amounts in the Mass Transit Account shall be available, as provided by appropriation Acts, for making capital or capital related expenditures (including capital expenditures for new projects) before October 1, 2026, in accordance with the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act or any other provision of law which was referred to in this paragraph before the date of the enactment of such Act (as such Act and provisions of law are in effect on the date of the enactment of such Act).

(4) Limitation. Rules similar to the rules of subsection (d) shall apply to the Mass Transit Account.

(5) Portion of certain transfers to be made from account.

(A) In general. Transfers under paragraphs (2) and (3) of subsection (c) shall be borne by the Highway Account and the Mass Transit Account in proportion to the respective revenues transferred under this section to the Highway Account (after the application of paragraph (2)) and the Mass Transit Account.

(B) Highway Account. For purposes of subparagraph (A), the term "Highway Account" means the portion of the Highway Trust Fund which is not the Mass Transit Account.

(f) Determination of trust fund balances after September 30, 1998.

(1) In general. For purposes of determining the balances of the Highway Trust Fund and the Mass Transit Account after September 30, 1998, the opening balance of the Highway Trust Fund (other than the Mass Transit Account) on October 1, 1998, shall be $8,000,000,000. The Secretary shall cancel obligations held by the Highway Trust Fund to reflect the reduction in the balance under this paragraph.

(2) Restoration of foregone interest. Out of money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, there is hereby appropriated--

(A) $14,700,000,000 to the Highway Account (as defined in subsection (e)(5)(B)) in the Highway Trust Fund; and

(B) $4,800,000,000 to the Mass Transit Account in the Highway Trust Fund.

(3) Increase in Fund balance. There is hereby transferred to the Highway Account (as defined in subsection (e)(5)(B)) in the Highway Trust Fund amounts appropriated from the Leaking Underground Storage Tank Trust Fund under section 9508(c)(2).

(4) Additional appropriations to Trust Fund. Out of money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, there is hereby appropriated to--

(A) the Highway Account (as defined in subsection (e)(5)(B)) in the Highway Trust Fund--

(i) for fiscal year 2013, $6,200,000,000, and

(ii) for fiscal year 2014, $10,400,000,000, and

(B) the Mass Transit Account in the Highway Trust Fund, for fiscal year 2014, $2,200,000,000.

(5) Additional sums. Out of money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, there is hereby appropriated --

(A) $7,765,000,000 to the Highway Account (as defined in subsection (e)(5)(B)) in the Highway Trust Fund; and

(B) $2,000,000,000 to the Mass Transit Account in the Highway Trust Fund.

(6) Additional increase in fund balance. There is hereby transferred to the Highway Account (as defined in subsection (e)(5)(B)) in the Highway Trust Fund amounts appropriated from the Leaking Underground Storage Tank Trust Fund under section 9508(c)(3).

(7) Additional sums. Out of money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, there is hereby appropriated --

(A) $6,068,000,000 to the Highway Account (as defined in subsection (e)(5)(B)) in the Highway Trust Fund; and

(B) $2,000,000,000 to the Mass Transit Account in the Highway Trust Fund.

(8) Further transfers to Trust Fund. Out of money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, there is hereby appropriated --

(A) $51,900,000,000 to the Highway Account (as defined in subsection (e)(5)(B)) in the Highway Trust Fund; and

(B) $18,100,000,000 to the Mass Transit Account in the Highway Trust Fund.

(9) Additional increase in fund balance. There is hereby transferred to the Highway Account (as defined in subsection (e)(5)(B)) in the Highway Trust Fund amounts appropriated from the Leaking Underground Storage Tank Trust Fund under section 9508(c)(4).

(10) Further transfers to Trust Fund. Out of money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, there is hereby appropriated--

(A) $10,400,000,000 to the Highway Account (as defined in subsection (e)(5)(B)) in the Highway Trust Fund; and

(B) $3,200,000,000 to the Mass Transit Account in the Highway Trust Fund.

(11) Further transfers to Trust Fund. Out of money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, there is hereby appropriated —

(A) $90,000,000,000 to the Highway Account (as defined in subsection (e)(5)(B)) in the Highway Trust Fund; and

(B) $28,000,000,000 to the Mass Transit Account in the Highway Trust Fund.

(12) Treatment of amounts. Any amount appropriated or transferred under this subsection to the Highway Trust Fund shall remain available without fiscal year limitation.

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