Process Inefficiencies and Costs Discourage Participation in FRA's RRIF Program

The Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing (RRIF) program, established in 1998 and administered by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), provides loans and loan guarantees to railroads and other entities to finance rail infrastructure projects. To date, FRA has issued 33 RRIF loans totaling roughly $1.7 billion—less than 5 percent of the program’s authorized $35 billion spending limit. Members of Congress have expressed concerns that the program’s lengthy application process and the associated costs may be contributing to this low participation rate. As a result of these concerns, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) conducted this audit to assess FRA’s policies and procedures for evaluating and selecting RRIF applications; and identify factors that affect applicants’ decisions to apply for RRIF financing. OIG recommends that FRA: (1) Develop comprehensive guidance for applicants that details the information needed to submit complete applications. (2) Make pre-application meetings mandatory and provide clear program guidance and related materials to applicants in advance of the meetings. (3) Develop a tool to track the progress of applications and establish a process for timely communication with applicants about the status of their applications. (4) Provide timely information to applicants on the reasons for denials. (5) Work with the Credit Council to streamline the application review process and develop a risk based approach for reviewing applications.

Language

  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Edition: Audit Report
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; Tables;
  • Pagination: 25p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01529319
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: CR-2014-054
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI, USDOT
  • Created Date: Jun 24 2014 10:11AM