|HUD No. 00-134|
|Further Information:||For Release|
|In the Washington, DC area: 202/708-0685||Tuesday|
|Or contact your local HUD office||June 13, 2000|
HUD AND UNION REACH AGREEMENT TO INCREASE TRANSIT SUBSIDIES
WASHINGTON Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo announced today that HUDs employee transit subsidy will be more than doubled in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.
Approximately 1,450 employees at HUD Headquarters, the HUD Storefront and the DC Field Office who participate in HUDs transit subsidy program will receive up to $65 per month the maximum monthly benefit up from a $30 maximum. The increase is effective July 1. The subsidy will not be added to employees salaries and, therefore, is not taxable.
"In partnership with the American Federation of Government Employees Union Local 476, and its new President Eddie Eitches, we are pleased to give HUD employees this benefit a full quarter earlier than required," said Cuomo. "We are pleased to have a good and productive working relationship with the union."
The Secretary made the announcement today at an employee event with Bobby L. Harnage, National President of AFGE, and Eitches.
Eitches said: "From the time when I was first elected President of Local 476, which represents Headquarters and the DC Field Office, I pursued the issue of increasing the transit subsidy to $65. While management listened carefully to the arguments, it thought it did not have the funds available. Through negotiations, which showed what real partnership between management and the local could provide, management agreed to provide the subsidy."
Harnage said: "Working in partnership, AFGE and HUD have pioneered and agreement that is in everyones best interest."
In order to reduce federal employee contribution to traffic congestion and air pollution, President Clinton signed Executive Order 13150 on April 21, mandating all federal agencies in the National Capital Region to implement a transportation fringe benefit for employees no later than October 1. 2000. The region includes DC, Montgomery, Prince Georges, and Frederick Counties in Maryland and Arlington, Fairfax, Loudon, and Prince William Counties in Virginia.
Traffic studies conducted annually by the Texas Transportation Institute ranked the Washington areas traffic congestion as the second worst in the country.
Government agencies that are currently paying
up to $65 are the Department of Transportation, the Federal Deposit Insurance
Corporation, Securities & Exchange Commission, the Internal Revenue
Service, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy.