The U.S. Government Accountability Office has released a report that explores how contributions to the Highway Trust Fund during the period 2005 to 2009 compared with the funding states received, what provisions were used to address rate-of-return issues across states, and what additional factors affect the relationship between contributions to the Highway Trust Fund and the funding states receive.
According to the GAO, from 2005 to 2009, every state received more funding for highway programs than they contributed to the Highway Account of the Highway Trust Fund. Based on the GAO analysis, this was possible because more funding was authorized and apportioned than was collected from the states, and the fund was augmented with about $30 billion in general revenues since fiscal year 2008.
However, the report also suggests that if the percentage of funds states contributed to the total is compared with the percentage of funds states received (i.e., relative share), then 28 states received a relatively lower share and 22 states received a relatively higher share than they contributed.
Thus, depending on the method of calculation, the same state can appear to be either a donor or a donee state.