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Senate tax bill kills bike commute $$

From the League of American Bicyclists Bad cut and paste job below: Skip to main content League of American Bicyclists -Home page Menu DONATEJOIN NOW Search ABOUT THE LEAGUE BICYCLE FRIENDLY AMERICA NATIONAL BIKE SUMMIT® SMART CYCLING ADVOCACY LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE LEAGUE STORE MEMBERSHIP QUICK LINKS CONNECT LOCALLYFind local events, classes, bike shops and more. SEARCH FORM Search SHARE THIS November 10, 2017 SAVE THE BIKE COMMUTER BENEFIT! by Ken McLeod Proposed Senate tax bill ENDS bike commuter benefit BUT keeps commuter tax breaks for driving! The Senate tax reform plan released on Thursday, eliminates the bike commuter benefit while keeping commuter benefits for driving and riding transit! If Congress is going to support benefits for some commuters, they should offer them to all commuters. The commuter parking benefit costs the federal government over $7 billion each year – 35 times the highest possible cost of the bike benefit. The Senate is trying to pass the bill as fast as possible – with Finance committee votes starting on Monday. We are working to get an amendment introduced to reinstate the bike benefit, so that the finance committee has a chance to reinstate the benefit to the growing number of bike commuters across the country. Please act this weekend - Ask your Senator to reinstate the bike commuter benefit by clicking the link below. If you Senator is on the Senate Finance Committee, we need you to tell them: If Congress is going to offer commuter benefits to some commuters, they should offer them to all commuters! Commuter benefits cost over $8.6 billion each year If every bike commuter in the United States used the bike commuter benefit it would cost less than 2.5% of that amount Eliminating the bike benefit alone does not significantly address revenue lost to commuter benefits The bike commuter benefit is a low cost way to promote healthier, livable communities. The average consumer spends over $4,500 each year on gas and other vehicle expenses The average cost of bike commuting is $350 per year. The bicycle commuter benefit covers up to $240 each year to defray costs of purchase, maintenance, and improvements for commuter bicycles. COMMENTS [+] QUICK LINKS PROGRAMSAdvocacy Advance Bicycle Friendly America Active Transportation Leadership Institute Equity Initiative Making Biking Better National Bike Month National Bike Summit Ride Smart Women Bike INFORMATIONE-News Bike Laws Media/News Policy/Reports Search Local Resources CONNECTHome Donate Join Renew Store BFA Login LCI Login SUBSCRIBESign up to receive our e-news in your inbox Copyright 2000-2015, League of American Wheelmen, Inc., 1612 K Street NW, Suite 1102, Washington, DC 20006, 202-822-1333. The League is a 501(c)(3) organization. LEAGUE OF AMERICAN BICYCLISTS®, NATIONAL BIKE SUMMIT,® BIKE LEAGUE?, BICYCLE FRIENDLY? , BICYCLE FRIENDLY AMERICA?, BICYCLE FRIENDLY STATE?, BICYCLE FRIENDLY COMMUNITY?, BICYCLE FRIENDLY BUSINESS?, BICYCLE FRIENDLY UNIVERSITY?, AND BF?, BFA?, BFS?, BFC?, BFB? AND BFB? ARE SERVICE MARKS OF LEAGUE OF AMERICAN WHEELMEN, INC.DBA LEAGUE OF AMERICAN BICYCLISTS. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. SEE OUR PRIVACY POLICY. Site design by Language Dept. Development byradicalDESIGNS. CONTACT LOGIN JOIN NOW DONATE RENEW STORE
2017-11-10 17:12:53
Sorry for the double post!  First one made it up, obviously, but also returned an error that there were more than 80 characters in the subject line.   If someone could delete the other post that would be great.   Also that web page has a fill in box allowing you to email both senators about this issue in about 10 seconds.
2017-11-10 17:16:01
This is definitely something I think can go. It's almost impossible to access. The employer has to do all the accounting work and the benefit is at most like $20 a month to that subset of employees who bike. Even Amazon, which is pro-bike and offers the public transit benefit, doesn't offer this one. It's just a poorly designed program.
2017-11-10 22:30:34
If they dump this then the pre-tax commuter parking should go too.
2017-11-11 11:34:36
Why? What is the logic connecting this two in this particular way?
2017-11-11 12:16:54
"This is definitely something I think can go. It’s almost impossible to access. The employer has to do all the accounting work and the benefit is at most like $20 a month to that subset of employees who bike. Even Amazon, which is pro-bike and offers the public transit benefit, doesn’t offer this one. It’s just a poorly designed program." I looked into this at a prior job and agree with your assessment. Even if my employer had wanted to fool around with the bike commuter program for the benefit of 2-3 people in the office (they didn't and I don't blame them), the problem was that you could not claim it if you also took advantage of the pre-tax treatment of parking costs. Due to time constraints, commuting distance and weather, there was no reality where the $20/month stipend (or whatever it was) could approach the savings from avoiding taxes on my parking costs. And even if I could have claimed both, the lost opportunity costs of fooling around with the paperwork would have rendered it worthless.
2017-11-11 19:37:13
I agree it’s a poor program. It assumes people will bike exclusively, and that’s not how people work. It took me years to get to the point of regularly traveling by bike, and even then, half the time it was transit assisted. Let’s take this opportunity to devise a sensible program that will actually encourage bike commuting. I’d rather see a more generous transit allowance for employers. Get people out of their cars first, then maybe they will consider adding a bike to the mix.
2017-11-12 13:46:28
Yeah, I wish I could have taken advantage of this as a daily, year round bike commuter, but my company never offered it. HR said there were no plans to. I'm just happy I have covered bike parking I guess. Kind of sucks that they made this so hard to implement.
2017-11-13 11:14:48