Alternative Commuting Incentives

נשלח 31 בינו׳ 2012, 10:51 על ידי Sustainability Org   [ עודכן 31 בינו׳ 2012, 10:52 ]
Alternative Commuting Incentives

Reducing the number of single occupancy vehicles on the road can significantly reduce a community's traffic congestion and emission levels. To overcome this challenge, alternative commuting incentives are a way to increase participation and overall environmental impacts by reducing the real and perceived costs associated with giving up single-driver vehicles.

Employer-based incentive programs can take many forms including the following:

General travel allowance

  • Used by employees for any transportation mode or for non-transportation purposes
  • Require considerable planning and promotional efforts during the pre-implementation phase
  • Ongoing administrative costs are relatively small
  • Low monitoring costs and accounting costs because the allowance is given out to all employees as a bonus
  • Reduction in the number of employees needing parking can generate savings in maintenance, monthly parking lease costs and future capital requirements

Targeted and specific allowance programs:

  • Transit and vanpool allowances
  • May require ongoing administrative effort for accounting and to monitor eligibility requirements as the employee base changes

Flexible use of allowances for services provided by many different operators:

  • The most complex programs with highest cost
  • Greater administrative, monitoring and accounting needs

Commute management and government incentives can take the following forms:

Tax Incentives

  • Investment tax credits for facilities and equipment
  • Accelerated depreciation

Subsidy Programs

  • Share in initial risk to get programs started
  • Give programs a chance to work, allow management and employees to see benefits
  • Can target commuters directly when necessary

Legislative Reform

  • Mandate employer involvement
  • Clarify tax, safety and liability laws to that would prevent the development of an incentive program
  • Create widespread adoption and increase economies of scale
  • Enable the formation of special assessment districts and transportation management associations

RATIONALE

Commuter programs can have widespread effects, as they reduce the number of vehicles on the road, improve community connections by encouraging neighbors and workers to carpool, and conserve greenspace by reducing the need for new parking spaces. The many varieties of alternative commute programs make it easy for businesses/local governments to build a program that will meet the needs of major stakeholders. 

EFFORT REQUIRED

Choosing the right program can require time and effort to research the available options and stakeholder needs. Financing the project can also be difficult if the business or organization has a limited budget. 

BENEFITS

Environmental benefits include reducing greenhouse gas emissions through a reduction of vehicle miles traveled and a decreased need for construction of parking lots. Economic benefits also include a decreased need for construction of parking lots, as well as an overall decrease in commuter parking fees. Alternative commute programs also save workers time and money by shortening their commute time and reducing their trips to the gas station. 

ACTION AGENT(S)

Human Resources Departments, Transit Agencies, Finance Departments. 

COSTS

The costs involved with an alternative commute program depend on the scope of the program. Costs can include purchasing vehicles, salaries of new employees hired to implement the program, financial benefits offered to employees and others.


 
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