Going Green: Commuter Tax Benefits

On my way home from work yesterday, on the train were brochures passed out by New Jersey Transit. The title began as “More money in your wallet” and “less tax out of your paycheck”.  As a daily mass transit rider this certainly caught my attention, so I thought I should share this information. In fact I’m going to pass it onto my employer to enlist their support.

Copying directly from the brochure, it reads as follows:

“The Federal Government just increased the pre-tax commuter benefit from $120 to $230 per month. That means you could save up to $1,000 a year on your trips to and from work.”

“To take advantage of these tax savings, your employer needs to opt-in to either the NJ Transit BusinessPass program or one of the programs offered by the providers listed below.”

“When your employer participates in a commuter pre-tax benefit program they will actually reduce the amount of payroll taxes they have to pay.”

“For more information visit njtransit.com/taxbenefits and pass this card along to your employee benefits department. It’s a win/win situation!”

For more information, assuming you live in New Jersey, visit their commuter tax benefits page. Another useful page on seven other tax benefit packages are available at http://www.njtransit.com/pdf/db_ep_smart_commuting.pdf.

Today I’m going to ask my employer, the County of Union, to give NJ Transit a call at 973-491-7600 so all employees who want it can sign up for this benefit. You should do the same.

P.S. The increase tax advantage was built into the the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 also known as ARRA or the federal stimulus bill. Go lobby your employer now.

Author: Michael Swayze

Former county welfare agency administrator, using a combination of social work and computer skills to share information about community resources via the Internet. Online since 1995.

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