This makes sense. Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas) just introduced a bill that would allow you and me to use pre-tax dollars to pay for heath and fitness expenses. So just as we can set aside a few thousands bucks (pre-tax) for medical expenses now, the same could be done to pay for the gym membership, the yoga class, maybe the youth soccer registration.
“Regular physical activity is the best preventive medicine we can prescribe,” Brady said this week. “This bill will give people another incentive to get active – to participate in that exercise class, join a sports team, or sign up for a fitness program.”
I like the idea. I see a few complications, though. Like what exactly is an allowable expense? I drop my kid off at the batting cage and she goes through ten dollars in quarters. My son enters the New York City Marathon. I sign up my kid for field hockey lessons at $50 a pop. I bought a Nintendo Wii. I bought six Nintendo Wiis. My wife had a baby on Monday. Tuesday, I order Baby Goes Pro on DVD. How far can I push this envelope?
What's truly remarkable about the bill - especially this week - is that it's supported by Republicans and Dems. Ron Paul and Earl Blumenauer, who I'm guessing rarely agree on what time it is, are co-sponsors. If nothing else, let's give this group credit for getting along.