By Dan Wing

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — US senator Bob Casey today joined with Septa officials at Suburban Station to push for full restoration of a popular commuter tax benefit program which was slashed at the end of 2013.

From 2009 tp 2013, people who used mass transit to get to work were allowed to use up to $245 of pre-tax income per month to offset that cost.  But at the end of 2013, the benefit was reduced by about $100 per month.

Now, Sen. Casey (D-Pa.) is pushing to get that full tax benefit back, and trying to make it permanent — “to $245 a month, with a cost-of-living adjustment from 2014 forward, so we don’t have to keep revisiting this issue,” he said today.

Septa estimates that a person making $50,000 per year would see an average tax savings of $960 if the benefit is restored.

In addition to the pre-tax savings, Casey says, the tax benefit would also give more people a reason to use mass transit, and could save employers on payroll taxes.

Casey says there is no timetable on when Congressional action would be taken on the bill, but says he’d like to get it restored as soon as possible.