A new cycle scheme to encourage healthy and environmentally-friendly travel for staff is being launched by Brighton & Hove City Council on Monday 3 September. This is also an opportunity for employers to reward staff with a free bike that only costs them half the retail price.
The government set up the Cycle to Work scheme tax incentive in 2005 to encourage employees to use bikes instead of private motor vehicles. It enables staff to effectively "hire" a bicycle tax and national insurance free through their employer.
Leader of Brighton & Hove City Council Brian Oxley said, “The council supports staff in choosing healthier and sustainable ways of travelling and it’s great that we are leading the way in enabling staff to take advantage of the scheme. We hope that other organisations and businesses in the city will follow suit and set up their own schemes.”
Employees who want to cycle to work can select a new bike and associated cycling safety accessories up to the value of £1,000. The VAT, income tax and national insurance contribution savings on the benefit could save them up to 50% on the overall cost of the bike.
Cycling is becoming a more popular way to travel to work as it’s often quicker than driving during rush hour. It’s also an easy way to get fit, saves money and helps cut carbon emissions.
The tax-free bike scheme will be run with P&MM Ltd, one of the largest employee benefits providers in the UK. Employees benefit from a long term loan of bikes and commuting equipment such as lights, locks and panniers.
Most employers can set up a tax-free bike scheme. It can be done as part of a wider Workplace Travel Plan, which the council can help with. Contact Workplace Travel Planner Rob Dickin on (01273) 292233 or, if you are a local authority employee, go to http://www.brighton-hove.gov.uk/stafftaxfreebikes for more information about the council’s scheme.
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