San Francisco Commuter Benefits Program

04/11/2014

Certain San Francisco California employers are now required to register for the Bay Area Commuter Benefits Program. Through this program, employers must offer their employees one of four Commuter Benefit options in order to comply with CA Senate Bill 1339, signed into law in October 2012. Commuter benefits encourage employees to take transit, vanpool, carpool, bicycle and walk rather than drive alone to work.

Covered employers, defined as those with an average of 50 or more full-time employees who perform work for compensation within the 9 San Francisco Bay Area counties, must offer and implement at least one of the following commuter benefit options by September 30, 2014:

  • Option 1 — Allow employees to exclude their transit or vanpool costs from taxable income, to the maximum amount, as allowed by federal law (currently $130 per month).
  • Option 2 — Employer-provided transit or vanpool subsidy up to $75 per month.
  • Option 3 — Employer-provided free or low cost bus, shuttle or vanpool service operated by or for the employer.
  • Option 4 — An alternative employer-provided commuter benefit that is as effective as in reducing single occupant vehicles as Options 1-3.

The commuter benefits need to be provided to an employee who works at least an average of 20 hours per week within the previous calendar month.

For additional information go to https://commuterbenefits.511.org or to view the employer guide, visit https://commuterbenefits.511.org/docs/employer_guide.pdf

For more information, contact WGA’s Compliance Practice.