Car-less commuting incentive sought

January 23, 1994|By New York Times News Service

WASHINGTON -- If President Clinton has his way, many commuters will get pay increases if they give up their parking spaces.

To reduce air pollution by encouraging people not to drive to work, the president will propose in the budget he sends Congress next month that some employers who subsidize their commuters' parking bills be required to give the workers the same amount of money in cash if they relinquish their parking spots.

That means, for example, that workers who now park in a lot that charges their employers $100 a month would have to be offered $100 in additional pay instead of free parking. People who do not get subsidized parking would not be affected by the proposal.

The rules would require legislation.

Administration officials, who acknowledged that the parking proposal would be part of the budget, said that the details were still being worked out. But they said that almost certainly the cash option would be required only in cases in which employers pay the parking fees at lots owned by someone else. The rules would not apply to the more common situation in which commuters park free on a company lot. The money workers would receive in place of subsidized parking would be fully taxable, the officials said.

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