Saturday, December 19, 2009
I spoke w/ the tax people at GW, who spoke w/ GW counsel, who think that the legislation for the bike commuting benefit is written too restrictively to reasonably expect employers to offer at this time. Apparently, it is not written in the same way as the parking/metro benefits (which allow employees to deduct the benefit pretax from their paycheck). Instead, it is apparently written so that employers themselves must pay the benefit & then get reimbursed later (I'm not quite clear on this). At any rate, GW thinks employers will actually get into tax trouble if they're offering it as an employee pretax deduction. So they're waiting for revisions in the law, which are apparently in the works. Also, the current law disallows getting say a parking benefit while getting the bike benefit; revisions are proposed to allow multiple commuter benefits simultaneously.