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« U.K. Report: Walk More and Lose Weight, Save the Environment | Main | People Can Adapt to Avoid Congestion - Just Give Them the Tools »

August 16, 2007

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Commuter 182

The discrepancy between the parking benefit, $215/mo, versus the transit /vanpool benefit, $110/mo is too wide, IMO. The two amounts should be closer. The reason for the parking benefit, I suspect, is to give employers in expensive parking areas (cities like DC, NY) more equal footing to compete for employees with employers in the suburbs, where parking is usually free (and hence the tax benefit is not applicable)

The $20/mo for bike commuters is unnecessary and should be repealed, as biking costs no money to utilize, unlike the above two choices.

Of course, different people will have different opinions regarding the "proper" amounts of benefits until the end of the time. To be fair to all groups, perhaps the Fed should simply eliminate ALL of the above tax benefits for commuters above, and instead, direct that money to further help build, maintain, or improve highway, transit, and bike paths.

After all, paying me $20/mo is not sufficient incentive to get me to risk my life biking to the nearest Metro station, if it's not safe to do so. However, creating a safe bike path just might get me to look into it. As for not having showers at work or adverse weather, well, there's not much the government can do about that.

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