Council will also vote on legislation requiring employers to offer pre-tax commuter benefits to employees

City Hall – Today the Council will vote on legislation establishing a citywide speed limit of 25 miles-per-hour. Additionally the Council will vote on legislation requiring employers allow their employees to use pre-tax wages for mass-transit commuting fare.

25 Mile-Per-Hour Speed Limit

Speed was the single greatest contributing factor in traffic deaths that occurred in 2012 and continues to play a significant role in traffic incidents involving motor vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists. Introduction 466-A, sponsored by Council Member Greenfield, would officially lower the citywide speed limit, which applies to areas where a speed limit is not posted, to 25 miles per hour. Expressways, parkways, and other roads managed by the State Department of Transportation would not be affected. The bill would take effect on November 7th, 2014.

“Today the Council votes to make millions of New Yorkers who are walking on our city streets safer. I’m proud to sponsor this legislation that will quite literally save lives. Reducing the default speed-limit in New York City is the lynchpin of Vision Zero. Thank you to Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito for making this issue a top priority and Transportation Chair Ydanis Rodriguez for his unwavering support,” said Council Member David Greenfield.

“We at the Council by lowering the speed limit call upon New York City drivers to reevaluate the way they approach our roadways,” said Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez. “New Yorkers must drive slower and safer if we’re going to save lives and achieve Vision Zero.”

Requiring Employers to Pre-Tax Commuter Benefits

Federal law allows employers to offer employees the option of setting aside a portion of their pre-tax wages for commuting expenses. Introduction 295-A, sponsored by Council Member Garodnick would save working New Yorkers money on their daily commute expenses by requiring businesses with 20 or more full-time employees in the City of New York to offer such a benefit for mass transit commuting. The bill would take effect on January 1, 2016, however, penalties would not be assessed until July 1, 2016, giving employers a six month grace period.

“New York transit riders need relief, and with this bill they are going to get it,” said Council Member Dan Garodnick. “Straphangers are consistently getting less for more, and this is an important way the City can help them access an important tax break, while promoting mass transit use at the same time.”