Minnesota Transportation Funding Redistribution (2015-2020): Who Contributes More and Who Receives More?


Camila Fonseca, Raihana Zeerak, Jerry Zhao, Adeel Lari

April 2022

Report no. TPEC 2022-03

The focus of this analysis is the redistribution of transportation funding across Minnesota. Transportation funding comes from all levels of government - the federal, the state, and local governments that include counties, cities, and townships. The redistribution of transportation funding arises the following questions: What areas contribute the most to transportation funding? What areas receive more funding? What areas contribute more than what they receive? Or vice versa. This report aims to answer these empirical questions with the purpose of facilitating informed decision making. In this report, we aggregate or allocate data to the county level for analysis and then present the aggregated results at the district level for a six-year period, between 2015 and 2020. We found that local governments fund a huge proportion of the transportation infrastructure in Minnesota, primarily through the property taxes they collect. The Metro District contributes slightly more than what it receives. In addition, this district receives the largest share of funding for transit services. Districts in Greater Minnesota receive more funding than they contribute, mainly due to lower population density. Finally, we found a cost of 8.7 cents per vehicle mile traveled in the state. This cost tends to be much higher in counties located in the north.

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