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49 U.S. Code § 302 - Policy standards for transportation

The Secretary of Transportation is governed by the transportation policy of sections 10101 and 13101 of this title in addition to other laws.
This subtitle and chapters 221 and 315 of this title do not authorize, without appropriate action by Congress, the adoption, revision, or implementation of a transportation policy or investment standards or criteria.
(c) The Secretary shall consider the needs—
for effectiveness and safety in transportation systems; and
of national defense.
(1) It is the policy of the United States to promote the construction and commercialization of high-speed ground transportation systems by—
conducting economic and technological research;
demonstrating advancements in high-speed ground transportation technologies;
establishing a comprehensive policy for the development of such systems and the effective integration of the various high-speed ground transportation technologies; and
minimizing the long-term risks of investors.
It is the policy of the United States to establish in the shortest time practicable a United States designed and constructed magnetic levitation transportation technology capable of operating along Federal-aid highway rights-of-way, as part of a national transportation system of the United States.
(e) Intermodal Transportation.—
It is the policy of the United States Government to encourage and promote development of a national intermodal transportation system in the United States to move people and goods in an energy-efficient manner, provide the foundation for improved productivity growth, strengthen the Nation’s ability to compete in the global economy, and obtain the optimum yield from the Nation’s transportation resources.

Historical and Revision Notes



Source (U.S. Code)

Source (Statutes at Large)



Oct. 15, 1966, Pub. L. 89–670, § 4(b), 80 Stat. 933.





In subsection (a), the words “In carrying out his duties and responsibilities under this chapter” before “Secretary of Transportation” are omitted as surplus. The words “the transportation policy of sections 10101 and 10101a of this title in addition to other laws” are substituted for “all applicable statutes including the policy standards set forth in the Federal Aviation Act of 1958, as amended [49 U.S.C. 1301 et seq.]; the national transportation policy of the Interstate Commerce Act, as amended; title 23, relating to Federal-aid highways; and title 14, titles 52 and 53 of the Revised Statutes, the Act of April 25, 1940, as amended, and the Act of September 2, 1958, as amended, relating to the United States Coast Guard” because each of the omitted laws is now applicable to the Secretary of Transportation and the Department of Transportation as the result of the restatement of those laws, and the Secretary is therefore bound to follow those laws by their own terms.

In subsection (c), the words “In exercising the functions, powers, and duties conferred on and transferred to the Secretary by this chapter” before “Secretary” are omitted as surplus. The word “consider” is substituted for “give full consideration to” to eliminate surplus words. The words “for operational continuity of the functions transferred” after “the needs” are omitted as executed.

Editorial Notes

1995—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 104–88 substituted “13101” for “10101a”.

1994—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 103–272 substituted “This subtitle and chapters 221 and 315 of this title” for “Subtitle I and chapter 31 of subtitle II of this title and the Department of Transportation Act (49 App. U.S.C. 1651 et seq.)”.

1991—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 102–240, § 1036(a), added subsec. (d).

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 102–240, § 5001, added subsec. (e).

1984—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 98–216 substituted “49 App. U.S.C.” for “49 U.S.C.”.

Statutory Notes and Related Subsidiaries
Effective Date of 1995 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 104–88 effective Jan. 1, 1996, see section 2 of Pub. L. 104–88, set out as an Effective Date note under section 1301 of this title.

Effective Date of 1991 Amendment

Amendment by section 1036(a) of Pub. L. 102–240 effective Dec. 18, 1991, and applicable to funds authorized to be appropriated or made available after Sept. 30, 1991, and, with certain exceptions, not applicable to funds appropriated or made available on or before Sept. 30, 1991, see section 1100 of Pub. L. 102–240, set out as a note under section 104 of Title 23, Highways.