US News & World Report: Bailout Gives Tax Credits to Bike Commuters, Electric Cars, Renewable Energy

Three new measures that will aid green consumers passed through Congress as part of the massive bailout bill last week. Here’s the rundown:

The Bicycle Commuter Act was added on to last week’s bailout bill and will provide a $20 tax credit per month to employers of bike commuters. The credit is intended to go toward adding provisions for bike commuters, like racks and locker rooms, for those who decide to go car free. However, many are decrying the act because it is part of an assortment of pork added to the bailout that some find frivolous–other items of which include tax credits for NASCAR track owners, film companies, and manufacturers of wool clothing. . .

BikesBelong.org: Bicycle Commuter Act Passes

October 6, 2008
After seven years, the bicycle commuter tax provision has finally passed both the House and Senate as part of the financial bailout package. President Bush signed the bill into law last Friday. This legislation will allow employers to give employees who commute by bike a monthly tax-free stipend. This benefit mirrors what is already permitted for commuters who carpool or use public transit.

We are grateful to Congressman Earl Blumenauer (OR) and other representatives who have worked tirelessly to advance this legislation, as well as all the devoted bicycle advocates who helped promote it.

We’ll post more details as soon as they are available.

Thanks to UrbanMennonite.com for the news on this act’s passage. I wish this law didn’t pass as another earmark on the bailout, but I am glad it is law. I only wish they included a provision for small-business owners (i.e. self-employed folks should get a tax credit for bike commuting too)