AZ Smart Fund
AZ Smart Fund
AZ State Match Advantage for Rural Transportation (SMART) Fund
About the Program
The following information is a summary only - see the Application Materials, FAQs and Resources and Federal Discretionary Grant Program pages for further details.
Numerous new federal discretionary grant programs were created with the passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA, also know as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act or BIL). The AZ SMART Fund was established by the Arizona Legislature in 2022 to assist eligible cities, towns, counties and the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) in competing for federal discretionary surface transportation grants. The Fund is administered by ADOT, and all awards must be approved by the State Transportation Board (STB).
Federal discretionary grants are highly competitive at the national level. It is the policy of the STB to award AZ SMART Funds to well-developed applications that maximize the State’s competitiveness for each federal discretionary grant. It is recommended that Applicants develop and/or review cost estimates carefully as they will be responsible for all costs exceeding the amount awarded by both the AZ SMART Fund and a federal agency.
The AZ SMART Fund received $50 million state fiscal year 2023. The monies are allocated to certain categories of eligible applicants as follows:
- 20%, or $10 million, for counties with a population of 100,000 persons or more;
- 20%, or $10 million, for counties with a population of fewer than 100,000 persons;
- 20%, or $10 million, for cities and towns with a population of 10,000 persons or more;
- 20%, or $10 million, for cities and towns with a population of fewer than 10,000 persons; and
- 20%, or $10 million, to ADOT.
AZ SMART does not provide match for formula programs such as STBGP, HSIP, off-system bridge or other formula federal aid.
The AZ SMART Fund grant program is different from the federal program using the “SMART” acronym, the Strengthening Mobility and Revolutionizing Transportation grant program which is funded by the federal government.
Most Arizona cities, towns, counties and ADOT are eligible for the AZ SMART Fund. See the list of ineligible entities here: AZ SMART Fund Eligible Applicants.
Applicants may request AZ SMART Funds for any of the following eligible uses associated with developing a project for, applying for, or providing a local, non-federal match on a federal grant.
- Reimbursement of up to 50% of the eligible costs associated with Grant Development and Submission of an application for a federal discretionary grant. Limited to counties with a population of less than 100,000 and cities and towns with a population of less than 10,000.
- Reimbursement of non-federal match for a federal grant.
- Reimbursement of design and other engineering services expenditures that meet federal standards for projects eligible for a federal grant. For the purposes of the AZ SMART Fund, design and other engineering services includes preliminary engineering through final design related to a road, bridge, rail or transit infrastructure construction project that the Applicant intends to submit for a federal grant in a future year.