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District Government Raises Awareness about Commuter Benefits Law

Mon, Jan 29, 2018

The District government has launched a public awareness campaign about its Commuter Benefits law that took effect in 2016. The Association’s Advocacy team attended a forum held by the city’s Department of Employment Services yesterday to find out what credit union needs to know.

D.C. businesses with 20 or more employees must offer at least one of the following commuter benefit options to all full-time and part-time employees performing 50 percent of their work in the District:

Option 1: Employee paid, pre-tax benefit
Option 2: Employer paid, direct benefit up to $260/month. (This can be merged with the first option, employer and employee can contribute)
Option 3:
Employer provided transportation (van pool or shuttle service)

Enrollment for commuter benefits must be open and available to covered employees throughout the year. Employers need to notify employees of the benefit, and provide information to covered employees about how to apply for and receive the benefit.

Due to a change in the federal tax code, commuter benefits are no longer tax deductible for companies, however, there are tax savings on FICA payroll taxes. See details in the SmartBenefits® program at www.wmata.com/smartbenefits.  

For more information about covered employers and employees, please contact the Department of Employment Services, Office of Wage-Hour at does.dc.gov, 202-671-1880 or OWH.ask@dc.gov