The Commuter Benefits Work for Us Coalition
WASHINGTON, July 2, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Members of the Commuter Benefits Work for Us Coalition today spoke out against Congress’ failure to increase the pre-tax monthly limit for the transit commuter benefit to the same level as the parking benefit as part of the “Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act” (MAP-21).
A provision to restore parity between the transit and parking benefit was included in the Senate version of the legislation, but the language was dropped from the final bill. Currently, commuters who choose public transportation or van pools to commute to work may deduct up to $125 per month in pre-tax dollars to help defray the cost of their commute. The monthly pre-tax benefit for parking is $240 per month for those who choose to drive.
While the Coalition is disappointed in the final results, it appreciates the efforts during the House-Senate deliberations on the surface transportation bill to restore parity between the parking and transit benefit, which has long enjoyed bipartisan, bicameral support. The Coalition would particularly like to thank Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY), Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Congressman James McGovern (D-MA), Congressman Randy Hultgren (R-IL) and Congressman Michael Grimm (R-NY) for their leadership and tireless efforts to restore parity in the bill. The Coalition looks forward to continuing to work with House and Senate leaders to address the parity issue in a more appropriate legislative vehicle before Congress adjourns this year.
The tax benefit saves working families up to $1000 per year, and provides a true incentive for commuters to use public transportation and van pools, rather than drive to work. The resulting increase in the use of public transportation and van pools helps reduce congestion, preserve the environment, reduces our nation’s reliance on foreign fuel imports and saves employers money that could be reinvested into the economy.
ABOUT THE COALITION: The Commuter Benefits Work for Us coalition consists of transit agencies, non-profit advocacy organizations and businesses dedicated to promoting the transit commuter benefit as an effective federal tool to help encourage increased use of public transportation and van pools. For more information, please visit www.commuterbenefitsworkforus.com.
SOURCE Commuter Benefits Work for Us