CMAP Launches New Microsite on Performance-Based Funding
On May 8, 2013, CMAP launched a new microsite about performance-based funding, which is a data-driven, transparent, and collaborative approach to planning and programming transportation funds. GO TO 2040 recommends that transportation funding decisions be based on transparent evaluation criteria, and calls on the region's transportation stakeholders to develop and utilize the necessary performance measures. In an era of constrained public resources, it is essential that investment decisions make progress toward established goals, and that each project be evaluated through a transparent process based on clear criteria.
The microsite describes how funds currently flow through the State of Illinois highway program, which operates under longtime policy constraints that include the so-called "55/45 split." Based not on law but on an informal agreement established decades ago within the General Assembly, this arbitrary formula directs 45 percent of transportation funds to northeastern Illinois and the remaining 55 percent downstate, despite the fact that our region contributes a much higher than 45-percent portion to the state's economy.
In October 2012, the CMAP Board and MPO Policy Committee called on the Illinois Department of Transportation to establish a technical advisory group to begin the process of developing a performance-based funding system. In February 2013, Representative Elaine Nekritz filed HB 1549. This bill was broadly similar to the CMAP proposal, and the CMAP Board voted to support it in principle. Although HB 1549 did not advance out of committee before a March 2013 deadline, CMAP will continue to advance this important issue.
Performance-based funding has been a top CMAP priority since the approval of GO TO 2040 over two years ago. The new microsite joins an Issue Brief, numerous Policy Updates, and agenda items to the CMAP Board and MPO Policy Committee. For a full summary of CMAP staff's activities on performance-based funding since July 2011, view this compendium.