Thursday, October 09, 2008

[Cyclelicious] New comment on Bike commuter benefit now law!.

Dave Atkins has left a new comment on your post "Bike commuter benefit now law!":

I think it is ironic that the sponsor of this bill ultimately stuck to his guns and voted against the this "sweetener" didn't even succeed in buying his vote.

I do think this is a great idea, but there is confusion over what this does. It will allow an employee to designate $20/month of their salary to go to a Transportation Reimbursement Account--as is currently possible for parking and transit at much higher levels. The employer is not going to be giving you an extra benefit; the benefit is that you can avoid paying taxes on $20/month of your salary. The government is not paying you $20, it is just not taxing $20 of your salary.

How you take advantage of this benefit, starting in 2009, is to hope that your employer already has a section 132 plan in place and that this option can be added to it. The cost to the employer is purely administrative, but you do have to get past that initial hurdle if your employer does not currently do anything like this.

I do not see where this law limits cyclists to a choice between bike, park, or transit. My understanding was that you can currently designate both transit and parking, so why not also bike?

Posted by Dave Atkins to Cyclelicious at 10/09/2008 08:58:00 AM