23 USC 108 - Advance acquisition of real property

(a) In General.— 

(1) Availability of funds.— 
For the purpose of facilitating the timely and economical acquisition of real property for a transportation improvement eligible for funding under this title, the Secretary, upon the request of a State, may make available, for the acquisition of real property, such funds apportioned to the State as may be expended on the transportation improvement, under such rules and regulations as the Secretary may issue.
(2) Construction.— 
The agreement between the Secretary and the State for the reimbursement of the cost of the real property shall provide for the actual construction of the transportation improvement within a period not to exceed 20 years following the fiscal year for which the request is made, unless the Secretary determines that a longer period is reasonable.
(b) Federal participation in the cost of rights-of-way acquired under subsection (a) of this section shall not exceed the Federal pro rata share applicable to the class of funds from which Federal reimbursement is made.

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(c) Early Acquisition of Rights-of-Way.— 

(1) General rule.— 
Subject to paragraph (2), funds apportioned to a State under this title may be used to participate in the payment of
(A) costs incurred by the State for acquisition of rights-of-way, acquired in advance of any Federal approval or authorization, if the rights-of-way are subsequently incorporated into a project eligible for surface transportation program funds; and
(B) costs incurred by the State for the acquisition of land necessary to preserve environmental and scenic values.
(2) Terms and conditions.— 
The Federal share payable of the costs described in paragraph (1) shall be eligible for reimbursement out of funds apportioned to a State under this title when the rights-of-way acquired are incorporated into a project eligible for surface transportation program funds, if the State demonstrates to the Secretary and the Secretary finds that
(A) any land acquired, and relocation assistance provided, complied with the Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policies Act of 1970;
(B) the requirements of title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 have been complied with;
(C) the State has a mandatory comprehensive and coordinated land use, environment, and transportation planning process under State law and the acquisition is certified by the Governor as consistent with the State plans before the acquisition;
(D) the acquisition is determined in advance by the Governor to be consistent with the State transportation planning process pursuant to section 135 of this title;
(E) the alternative for which the right-of-way is acquired is selected by the State pursuant to regulations to be issued by the Secretary which provide for the consideration of the environmental impacts of various alternatives;

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(F) before the time that the cost incurred by a State is approved for Federal participation, environmental compliance pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act has been completed for the project for which the right-of-way was acquired by the State, and the acquisition has been approved by the Secretary under this Act,[1] and in compliance with section 303 of title 49, section 7 of the Endangered Species Act, and all other applicable environmental laws shall be identified by the Secretary in regulations; and
(G) before the time that the cost incurred by a State is approved for Federal participation, both the Secretary and the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency have concurred that the property acquired in advance of Federal approval or authorization did not influence the environmental assessment of the project, the decision relative to the need to construct the project, or the selection of the project design or location.
[1] See References in Text note below.