Everyone wants to breathe clean air; yet, the overall level of air pollution in the Los Angeles Basin has been and continues to be unacceptably high. Over the years, various laws have been passed to address this problem, resulting in noticeable improvement during the past few decades. To accelerate progress toward consistently clean air, The South Coast Air Quality Management District adopted regulations to further control air pollution from mobile sources. Biola has a Trip Reduction Program that provides incentives to employees to encourage carpools, use of public transportation, biking, walking, and telecommuting as alternatives to riding alone to work.
Biola's contribution to the cause for cleaner air is contained within the provisions of the Commuter Incentive Program. There are many facets to this program, but the most noticeable ones include:
- Numerous on-site amenities which reduce the need for a car before, during, and after work.
- "A dollar a day." Each day an employee (including student employees) uses an alternate means of transportation by walking, biking, carpooling, taking public-transportation, driving an electric-only car, or telecommuting to work Monday through Friday, they will be paid one dollar per day.
- Employees that use alternative transportation for 19 or more days a month will receive a voucher for one free Cafe lunch.
- Employees who have used alternative transportation for all working days in that quarter will be eligible for quarterly prize drawings (three winners per quarter).
- Finally, special permits to park in the carpool spaces in Lot A are available to those that carpool at least 75 percent of the time.
Carpooling is defined as two or more individuals traveling together for the majority (51 percent) of the total trip distance. You may share a ride with another Biola employee, be dropped off by someone, or drop someone off at their work site on the way to Biola.
Telecommuting is working a normal workday at home without generating a work trip on that day.
Many departments will allow their employees to vary their working hours in order to accommodate ride sharing. Any employee who is a participant in the Commuter Incentive Program via biking or carpooling and who, for some reason, gets “stranded” at work with no available way home, will be eligible for a “guaranteed free ride home.” This is arranged through the Human Resources department.
Employees are given an opportunity each month to complete a simple online commuter incentive claim form to indicate the days they used an alternate means of transportation. Payment for the Commuter Incentive Program is added to the employee’s regular paycheck, once a month.
Whether you participate occasionally or regularly, every little bit counts. Californians are finally doing more than just talking about the smog—they’re trying to change it. As concerned citizens, as concerned Christians, and as a concerned institution, the Biola community desires to share in making a difference.