The new Congress and particularly the House Ways & Means Committee continue work on legislation to simplify and reform the tax code. One potential provision could be the elimination of the Commuter Benefit (IRC Section 132(f)). The threat of eliminating the parking and transit benefit is real and the consequences are significant.
American Benefits Group, a leading national provider of pre-tax commuter benefits announces a new addition to our commuter benefits program. We have recently partnered with Uber and Lyft to offer a solution that will allow employees to pay for uberPOOL and Lyft Line rides with their ABG Prepaid MasterCard and the Commuter Check Prepaid MasterCard. Beginning immediately, employees can use their Commuter Benefit to pay for uberPOOL and Lyft Line rides to commute to and from work.
San Francisco recently took a major step in helping both its hard-working citizens and the environment. On March 26, 2014, the SB 1339 Bay Area Commuter Benefits Program became official. Now the Bay Area Air District and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) will be working together with their regional Bay Area commuter policy, which mandates that all employers with 50 or more full-time employees, offer commuter benefits to both full-time workers and those that work at least 20 hours a week. Employers have until September 30, 2014, to comply with the SB 1339 Bay Area Commuter Benefits Program.
Qualified Transportation Fringe Benefits. For 2014, the monthly limit on the amount that may be excluded from an employee’s income for qualified parking benefits is $250 (a $5 increase from the 2013 limit of $245). The combined monthly limit for transit passes and vanpooling expenses for 2014 is $130 (a $115 decrease from the 2013 limit). [EBIA Comment: The substantial decrease is due to expiration of the temporary “rule of parity” that made the combined limit for transit and vanpooling the same as the parking limit for 2012 and 2013. Whether Congress will eventually extend the rule of parity to 2014 is uncertain.]