Congress not expected to act in 2011 on commuter tax benefit or CNG tax credit

Here’s the not-so-good word from Metro’s government relations team:

As Congress prepares to adjourn for the holidays in a matter of days, it appears that it will not address two issues of importance to our agency and transportation agencies around the nation.

The CNG tax credit (50 cents per gasoline gallon equivalent) that our agency benefits from is slated to expire at the end of the year. The CNG tax credit was initially authorized under SAFETEA-LU (with our strong support) and was designed to assist transit agencies who maintain environmentally friendly bus fleets.

Also expiring at the end of the year, is a commuter tax benefit which allows taxpayers to lower their federal tax bill by setting aside pretax money to pay for the cost of taking public transit. The tax benefit for transit users now stands at $230 a month and will decline to around $125 if Congress fails to act. Our agency has communicated our strong interest in both of these issues with members of the Los Angeles County Congressional Delegation, including our U.S. Senators.

Currently, it appears that Congress is poised to act on a year-end legislative package which will provide for a one year extension of the payroll tax cut, extend Unemployment Insurance, and address the rate at which Medicare reimburses physicians, formally known as the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate. We will continue to aggressively work to renew the CNG tax credit and the commuter tax benefit, should the first session of the 112th Congress fail, in the coming days to favorably address them.



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