Author Topic: Cost of commuting 100mi each way to work... NOTHING!!!!  (Read 3846 times)

EastCoastMike

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Cost of commuting 100mi each way to work... NOTHING!!!!
« on: October 25, 2014, 02:13:15 PM »
This just irritates the hell out of me.  My jobsite has a company vehicle assigned so that we can get parts or tools as necessary to perform our daily job.  In three years, it's been used that way maybe five times. 

The leasing arrangement allows off-site garaging privileges, so my coworker drives the truck home every night.  The 100 mile mark isn't an exaggeration.  It's actually how far from the site he lives.  So he makes this commute every day, putting 1000 miles a WEEK on a vehicle which barely gets 30mpg.  It's probably much less since he doesn't drive efficiently and there's a bit of city driving on his route. 

All told, this thing has cost my job $8700 in gas, lease, and maintenance since the beginning of the year.  I've mentioned several times that I think the vehicle needs to go.  Each time, I am met with something like this, "well, he needs it to get to work".  No he doesn't. 

Of course, whenever I suggest to him he should consider moving closer to work, I get a litany of excuses.  Houses are too small.  Can't get any acreage.  The neighbors are too close.  Crime happens.  There's a sex offender in the city.  On and fucking on.

One of the incentives this job offers is a yearly bonus based on job performance.  If the job is profitable, we get a cut of that.  Sucking out $10k a year to live out in the fucking boonies makes the job less profitable and screws with everyone's bonus, including his.  Way to be a team player. 

OK.  I'm done ranting.  That was cathartic.  I still want to punch someone in the face though.

Primm

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Re: Cost of commuting 100mi each way to work... NOTHING!!!!
« Reply #1 on: October 25, 2014, 07:13:54 PM »
I can't complain too badly since my husband is one of those "drive for free" employees. But he's not the only one, all of the people doing his job get private use of their vehicle.

Last year due to changes in the tax law (the company had to provide commercial vehicles i.e. vans instead of cars or pay fringe benefits tax) all of the guys got a two seater van instead. You should have heard the complaints from the other guys when they couldn't' fit their families into their "free" car! Us? Our kids have all left home and we're renovating a house. That thing has done its time doing hardware store shuttles, let me tell you.

Why does your coworker get preference? Is it a seniority thing? Or is it just historical? At my work there are some cars that employees garage at home, but it works on a roster system, week about. Maybe you could suggest something like that.

Or maybe it's part of his contract. In which case that still isn't particularly fair.

GetItRight

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Re: Cost of commuting 100mi each way to work... NOTHING!!!!
« Reply #2 on: October 26, 2014, 10:01:43 AM »
It's actually how far from the site he lives.  So he makes this commute every day, putting 1000 miles a WEEK on a vehicle which barely gets 30mpg.  It's probably much less since he doesn't drive efficiently and there's a bit of city driving on his route.

Barking up the wrong tree. 30 MPG is around the point of diminishing returns where additional MPG may never pay for itself in terms of additional investment. 30 vs 40 MPG at current gas prices is under $900/yr difference, trivial. The real issue is that he has a company vehicle at all. Some jobs that is a perk, company car and company pays for fuel. I don't like that type of arrangement but at the end of the day it's no different than negotiating for higher pay, extra vaca time, flex time, etc... More power to him if the company gives him this perk where he doesn't need to pay for a car, maintenance, fuel, and so on.

Life isn't fair, but if you and him perform similar jobs and his overall compensation is greater than yours taking this perk into account you may have some room to negotiate more for yourself. If he needs a company paid vehicle to get to work, and that's the justification as opposed to part of his compensation then maybe you can get a company car too... After all you need to get to the job site too. Ask for a car, or to be compensated for your mileage or fuel costs driving to work. Careful with your negotiation though as it can be bad for all involved but you particularly to be cutting others down in a race to the bottom.

EastCoastMike

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Re: Cost of commuting 100mi each way to work... NOTHING!!!!
« Reply #3 on: October 26, 2014, 11:01:48 AM »
The stated purpose for the job site vehicle is to have it available to get parts and such... in an emergency.  You know, "the main chiller just ate itself and we need XX part to get it running NOW!".  I'm not sure how he convinced my boss to let him take it home each night.  I ended up with it for a week when he went on vacation once last year, because I insisted he leave it at work so that it could fulfill it's designated purpose.  In that week, I didn't even start it up. 

I probably wouldn't object so much if he didn't use the "free vehicle" as a justification for moving farther (or is it further?) and farther away every couple months.  We just can't get it through his head that the vehicle ISN'T free.

During my last review cycle, my boss asked me if I had any suggestions to improve the bottom line.  Without hesitation, I told him I'd get rid of the vehicle.  When he commented that it would make it harder for my co-worker to get to work, I told him I didn't see how that was my problem.  I live close to work because commuting expenses matter to me.  I pay for them directly out of each paycheck.  I also get to subsidize my co-worker's commuting expenses in the form of lower raises and bonuses because there's less money in the budget at the end of the year.  So yeah, it's petty, but Lord does it infuriate me!

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: Cost of commuting 100mi each way to work... NOTHING!!!!
« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2014, 03:05:17 PM »
It absolutely is not petty. Your bottom line depends on the company's, and the company is making decisions--subsidizing an employee's choice to live far away--that you think are unwise. Am I reading your post right that he doesn't even have to pay for his own gas? That's bizarre.

That said, since you've already expressed how you feel and have been blown off, your choices are pretty much to suck it up (no job is perfect) or find a different job. I would be frustrated, too!

sheepstache

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Re: Cost of commuting 100mi each way to work... NOTHING!!!!
« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2014, 03:15:13 PM »
Still, it's a substantial perk your coworker is getting that you're not. I agree with GetItRight that that's something worth bargaining with the next time raises come around. Total up just the gas mileage since they want to keep the van anyway and argue that you deserve an equivalent package. Or insist that the cost has to come out of his cut of the bonus pool.

Or insist on a rotating system. Each employee gets it for personal reasons for a week. Even if you can't get other people interested, if you get it half the time, that's going to have a big impact on his reliance on it. When it's yours, you can just park it somewhere nearby out of sight so it's not so obvious you're doing it just to screw him.

dragoncar

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Re: Cost of commuting 100mi each way to work... NOTHING!!!!
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2014, 09:13:12 PM »
200 miles a day is gonna suck out way more than $10k per year.  What's the overage rate on the lease?