In late October the Affordable Transit Act was enacted which will require New York City employers with 20 or more full-time employees to offer pre-tax transit benefits to full-time employees (at least 30 hours of service per week) as of January 1, 2016.
Effective July 1, 2016, employers not offering this benefit will be given 90 days to correct their action before a civil penalty of $100 – $250 is applied. If the employer continues to not offer the benefit, a penalty of $250 will be assessed every 30 days.
Exemptions from this requirement are limited to the following:
- Government agencies
- Where a collective bargaining agreement exists between any group of employees and an employer; however, if the number of full-time employees not covered by the agreement is 20 or more, the employer must provide these individuals with transit benefits.
- Employers not required to pay federal, state, or city payroll taxes
- Employers able to prove to the department that offering this benefit would be a financial hardship