Great news for commuters! The recent tax and spending package signed into law last month included a provision that increases the maximum allowable transit benefit from $130/month to $255/month. This bill permanently restores parity between transit and parking benefits and allows commuters who take public transit or vanpool to save on their transportation costs.
This increase applies to companies offering both subsidized transit benefits as well as those allowing employees to contribute pre-tax salary towards their transit or vanpool commuting costs.
For employees, ask your employer about increasing your transit benefit amount for 2016. The increase will be especially helpful for long distance commuters who travel on systems like VRE or Loudoun County commuter buses. For example, a monthly pass from Manassas to Crystal City on VRE currently costs $241.70, a month’s worth of riding a Loudoun County commuter bus can cost over $300.
For employers, encourage your employees to increase their benefit amount if needed. This is a valuable employee benefit that can increase satisfaction among staff and also provide tax benefits to your bottom line.
If your company does not currently provide a benefit to employees, you could be missing out on significant tax savings while also lacking a key employee recruitment and retention strategy. ATP can assist HR or corporate representatives in setting up a transit benefit program – from creating a SmartBenefits account to providing sample transit benefit policies and enrollment forms. You can also learn more at the free upcoming SmartBenefits seminar for employers on January 13th.
Contact ATP for more information on enhancing your company’s employee commuter benefits in 2016.