You may provide an employee with any one or more of the first three benefits at the same time. However, the exclusion for qualified bicycle commuting reimbursement isn't available in any month the employee receives any of the other qualified transportation benefits.
For any calendar year, the exclusion for qualified bicycle commuting reimbursement includes any employer reimbursement during the 15-month period beginning on the first day of the calendar year for reasonable expenses incurred by the employee during the calendar year. Reasonable expenses include:
These are considered reasonable expenses as long as the bicycle is regularly used for travel between the employee's residence and place of employment. This does not include a Transit pass for commuters travelling by a mix of bus, rail, ferry, and bicycle. A transit pass is any pass, token, farecard, voucher, or similar item entitling a person to ride, free of charge or at a reduced rate, on one of the following.
On mass transit
In a vehicle that seats at least 6 adults (not including the driver) if a person in the business of transporting persons for pay or hire operates it
Mass transit may be publicly or privately operated and includes bus, rail, or ferry. For guidance on the use of smart cards and debit cards to provide qualified transportation fringes, see Revenue Ruling 2014-32, 2014-50 I.R.B. 917, available at IRS Bulletin 2014-50_IRB (employee benefits).
Exclusion from wages. You can generally exclude the value of transportation benefits that you provide to an employee during 2017 from the employee's wages up to the following limits.
For any employee, a qualified bicycle commuting month is any month the employee:
Employer Z hires Employee A, and offers Employee A a $1,000 per month salary. Employer Z wishes to offer Employee A the Qualified Bicycle Commuting Benefit. Employer Z notifies Employee A he may receive $20 a month should he wish to use the benefit, and Employer Z would provide a $20 voucher which could be used at area bicycle stores. Employee A continues to receive $1,000 a month, as well as the voucher. This is an acceptable method to provide the benefit because Employee A did not have a choice to opt for a lower taxable income by taking the benefit, not constituting constructive receipt of income.
Tokyo ()—Bridgestone Corporation today announced that, together with Bridgestone Cycle Co., Ltd., the company has developed a next-generation bicycle tire as an effort to realize practical application of the “Air Free Concept*1,” a technology for creating tires that do not need to be inflated with air. The companies will advance feasibility studies seeking to make this new tire available in market by 2019. More …
The thin, flexible supercapacitor developed at the University of Central Florida boasts high energy and power densities. Its developers say it would allow handsets to charge in seconds, with each charge lasting for a week. However, they found a supercapacitor that held as much energy as a lithium-ion battery would have to be much, much larger. The team at UCF experimented with applying newly discovered two-dimensional materials only a few atoms thick to supercapacitors. They developed supercapacitors composed of millions of nanometer-thick wires coated with shells of two-dimensional materials. A highly conductive core facilitates fast electron transfer for fast charging and discharging, and uniformly coated shells of two-dimensional materials yield high energy and power densities.
Doetinchem, the Netherlands–In a joint project, MIT and Samsung cooperate in the development of a new material for Li-Ion batteries. In a recent scientific publication, the researchers claim that their new material, a solid electrolyte, could not only extend battery life endlessly but also greatly increase storage capacity as well as safety. All this brings major benefits to e-bikes.
The organic solvent in current lithium ion batteries with liquid electrolyte is responsible for overheating and fires, posing major risks. In the peer-reviewed journal ‘Nature Materials’ Gerbrand Ceder, a professor of materials science and engineering at MIT even stated that, “You could throw solid-state Li-Ion batteries against the wall, drive a nail through it, there’s nothing there to burn.”
Consumers that buy online expect the ordered goods to be delivered in hours, not in weeks. With more and more companies and brands switching to omnichannel distribution—including online sales, huge changes must take place in the supply chain. Multiple months in lead times are no longer viable. The luxury of time is vanishing.
Friedrichshafen, Germany—Two of the world’s biggest battery suppliers presented major innovations at last week’s Eurobike. Panasonic showed its newly developed 20700 cell. BMZ, however, topped that with the World 1st 21700 cell. With the company’s new 3Tron battery system, the lifespan of an e-bike battery is increased to 12 years, claims BMZ.
The 3Tron system also comes with high-quality materials such as stronger conductors which are built into the 21700 cell while the proportion of active cell material has been significantly increased. “This allows a full 50% increase in energy supply. Thanks to low internal resistance, the output increases by 68%. And the 3Tron’s discharge current is actually four times higher than that of standard battery cells. The new 3Tron battery is not only stronger, longer-lasting and higher in endurance than an 18650 cell, it is also lighter due to the premium materials used—as if predestined for the e-bike field,” claims BMZ.
The 3Tron power packs will be assembled in Europe’s battery gigafactory at BMZ in Karlstein, Germany.
Last year the sale of electric bicycles, eMTBs, and speed e-bikes reached a milestone and broke all turnover records in the Netherlands. In 2015 e-bike sales accounted for more than 50% of the total turnover reached with the sale of new bicycles. A big €514 million representing 57% of all bike sales was made with electric bicycles. A total of 276,000 electric bicycles were sold in Holland. This accounted for a 28% market share. These records will again be broken by the 2016 sales totals for e-bikes.
Brussels, Belgium—With the definite application of the new legally bound type-approval system for electric bikes only a few weeks away, AVERE, the European Association for Electromobility, cautions for the continued selling of non-type-approved eBikes. AVERE states, “Sales of illegal electric bicycles may eventually put off consumers and thus jeopardize this promising market.” However, if you are really into speed (and who isn't?), here is an electric bicycle that rode to 3rd at Laguna Seca.
By riding to school or work, you save a lot of CO2 being added to the atmosphere (for example, Total Car Footprint = 6.71 metric tons of CO2e for 12,000 miles/year). Most of the fuel you buy goes into moving the vehicle (for example, if you drive a 3,325lb car and you weigh 175lb, then 95% of the fuel is consumed by the car). An eBike costs less than a penny a mile to run, has very low maintenance costs, and can usually park for free (in great locations). Furthermore, in many states (see CA, UT, NY, and a full list), an eBike requires no insurance, no taxes, no registration, no finance charges, no or some age restriction, and no driver’s license. Finally, traffic is rarely a problem and you are choosing a healthy lifestyle.
Report NITC-RR-564 by John MacArthur and Nicholas Kobel of Portland State University for the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC).
From the Denver Post:
After pretty much taking over Asia and sweeping through Europe, the electric bike scene is zooming for the U.S., promising a quiet revolution that could reduce reliance on cars, grow cycling opportunities for an aging demographic, protect air quality, provide exercise and change the nature of urban travel.
Bicycle Colorado executive director Dan Grunig thinks those commuter eBikes could help an urban family move to one car from two. “I see them replacing car trips, not bike trips,” he said. “It’s pretty exciting to get more people out of cars.”