Treasury HomeContact Us

Forms

more...

Publications


Related Topics

 

  • Parking and Transportation Frequently Asked Questions

Questions

Answers

What are Transportation and Parking Flexible Benefits Accounts?
State employees may elect to open a Transportation and/or Parking Flexible Benefits Account to submit expenses incurred for the use of "Qualified Transportation Expenses" to and from work, and/or for "Qualified Parking Expenses" incurred while working for the State.

 back to top

What is a "Qualified Transportation Expense"?
A "Qualified Transportation Expense" is the cost incurred by the employee to commute from home to work and from work to home on a public mass transit system, or by participating in a qualified van pool. Examples are commuter rail services, public bus systems, taxi service, shuttle service, a van pool operated through a transportation arrangement with the State or a public transit system, or a privately owned van that qualifies as a "commuter highway vehicle."

The IRS defines a "commuter highway vehicle" as:

  • The seating capacity of which is at least six (6) adults (not including the driver);
  • At least 80 percent of the mileage use of which is reasonably expected.
  • For purposes of transporting employees in connection with travel between their residences and their place of employment
  • On trips during which the number of employees transported for such purposes is at least ½ of the adult seating capacity of such vehicle (not including the driver).
Can a group of employees get together and use a personal vehicle as a car pool and claim this as a transportation expense?
Any privately owned vehicle used for pooled transportation must meet the IRS guidelines as outlined above.

What is a "Qualified Parking Expense"?
A "Qualified Parking Expense" is the cost incurred by an employee to park their personal vehicle during the time they are working for the State. This expense can be incurred at a public or privately owned parking facility.

back to top

What about State issued bus passes?

In some areas of the State, bus passes are provided to employees free of charge.  These free passes do not qualify as an incurred expense.

Can I claim gas and mileage as a transportation expense if I use my personal vehicle?
No. Expenses must be related to the use of mass transit or a sanctioned program.

 back to top

I use my personal vehicle for State business. Can I claim the expenses through a Transportation and Parking Account?
No. Using your personal vehicle for State business is reimbursable through your agency's travel reimbursement process.

 back to top

How do I enroll in a Transportation and/or Parking Account?
Complete an enrollment form and submit it to your Human Resources Section. You may elect to open a Transportation Account, a Parking Account, or both. Enrollment Forms are available through your Human Resources Section, or on our web site here.

When can I enroll?
Flexible Benefits Transportation and Parking Accounts are available as of January 1, 2009. Enrollment will begin on October 15, 2008. Unlike the Medical and Dependent Care Accounts, you may enroll in a Transportation and Parking Account at any time during the year.

 back to top

Can I change an elected amount during the year?
Unlike the Medical and Dependent Care Accounts, you may change your elected Transportation and/or Parking Accounts amount at any time. Enrollments or changes received by the 15th of the month will become effective the 1st of the following month.

 back to top

What are the limitations on the amounts I can elect?
Transportation costs are limited to $110.00 per month, and parking is limited to $215.00 per month for calendar year 2009.

How do I receive reimbursement?
For Transportation Accounts, complete a Reimbursement Request Form and submit the form to the Flexible Benefits Office. Along with the form you must include a receipt that includes the name and address of the provider (name and address of owner if a private van was used), the date the expense was incurred, the name of the employee and the amount of the expense. Copies of tickets, canceled checks, credit card statements and bank statements are not acceptable as receipts.

For Parking Accounts, complete a Reimbursement Request Form and submit the form to the Flexible Benefits Office. Along with the form you must include a receipt that includes the name of the provider, the date the expense was incurred, the name of the employee (not required for automated receipts) and the amount of the expense. No consideration will be given to requests that involve a cash transaction where no receipt is issued, i.e. parking meters. Copies of canceled checks, credit card statements and bank statements are not acceptable as receipts.

 back to top

Can I receive reimbursements for expenses incurred by my dependents?
No. Expenses must be related to the use of mass transit or a sanctioned program.

Is there a monthly limit on the amount I can be reimbursed?

Yes. During any given month, you can only be reimbursed up to a maximum of $110.00 for a Transportation Account or $215.00 for a Parking Account, depending on the amount of your deduction.

For example, if you incur $200.00 in transportation costs during one month, you can only receive up to the maximum of $110.00 for that month even if your account balance is higher than that amount.

 back to top

Do I have to submit a request each month to avoid going over the maximum monthly amount allowable?
No. You can submit request at any interval you desire.

For example, you open a Transportation Account with a deduction of $100.00 per month. You then incur $100.00 in transportation costs each month for the months of January, February and March. You can submit a single request for $300.00 which represents your actual expenses. Since no single month exceeded the maximum reimbursable amount, the request would be approved.

 back to top

What happens when I go on vacation or have an unexpected extended leave?
If you know you will not be incurring any transportation or parking expenses during a given time period, complete an Election Form and check the appropriate box to stop your account.

When you are ready to resume your account, complete another form and check the enrollment box.

Will any unused money be refunded?
No. Money deducted and placed into an account can only be dispersed by meeting the qualifications for reimbursement.

back to top