PennDOT commits liquid fuels payments to municipalities

Shawn Curtis, The Tribune-Democrat, Johnstown, Pa.
·1 min read

Mar. 2—The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has committed $452.7 million in liquid fuels payments to help certified municipalities maintain their roads and bridges.

This year's allocation is approximately 7% less than last year's, due to reduced gas tax revenues as a result of COVID-19.

"We have the fifth-largest state-maintained road system in the country, and there are even more locally owned roads and bridges," PennDOT Secretary Yassmin Gramian said in a release issued on Monday.

"These critical investments help keep our communities safe and connected."

According to PennDOT, Act 89 of 2013 made more funding available for locally owned roadways. Before the law, municipalities received $320.8 million in liquid fuels payments.

To be eligible for liquid fuels, a roadway must be formally adopted as a public street by the municipality, meet certain dimension requirements, and be able to safely accommodate vehicles driving at least 15 mph.

Annually, a municipality may use 20% of its net allocation for the purchase of major equipment.

According to a document posted online, certified municipalities in Cambria County will be allocated almost $5.6 million from the program while those in Somerset County are slated to take in just over $5 million.

Bedford County's certified municipalities will receive approximately $3.5 million in allocations from the program.

PennDOT's annual distributions assist with municipalities' highway and bridge-related expenses, such as snow removal and road repaving. There are 120,596 miles of public roads in Pennsylvania. There are 73,091 miles owned by municipalities and eligible for liquid fuels payments.

The formula for payments is based on a municipality's population and miles of locally owned roads.