Incentivizing Transit in Chicago

Given the soaring gas prices, Cook County, Illinois, is hoping to prod employers to offer transit benefits. Under the federally funded program, Chicago-area employers are eligible to receive up to $1,700 if they sign up to give their workers the option to pay transit fares using pretax income. Depending on tax brackets, this can lower the amount of taxable income by hundreds of dollars per year and also can reduce companies’ payroll taxes. The Chicago Tribune notes that Chicago-area transit riders save an average of nearly $12,000 annually over those that drive.

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