Tax Incentive for New Bike Purchase?

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Via BikePortland, Jonathan Maus writes that Congressman Ron Kind (D-WI) introduced The Public Health Investment Today (PHIT) Act of 2009 (H.R. 2105).  This act would allow taxpayers to allot money in a pre-tax flex account to put towards “qualified sports and fitness expenses.”

Now, mind you, only $250 could be alloted towards purchase of an item.  Overall, this bill is aimed at increasing overall fitness participation, not specifically bicycles.  

Maus writes:

If the bill passes, section 213(d) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 would be amended to include a subparagraph for, “qualified sports and fitness expenses.” Expenses covered under the new law would include; membership at a fitness center, participation or instruction in a program of physical exercise or physical activity, and “equipment for use in a program (including a self-directed program) of physical exercise or physical activity.”

The bill has text to disallow use of funds for joining country clubs, golf courses, and horse riding facilities.  $250 might not sound like much, but it’s comparable to the $20 per month employer reimbursement which the IRS recently adopted.

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