Employee perks and discounts

Find perks and discounts for county employees.
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MetroPass and other transit cards

Using pre-tax money to ride the bus or light rail

  • The county pays 40% of the cost
  • Your 60% of the cost comes out of your paycheck pre-tax  
  • Only employees are eligible for bus cards (not dependents)
  • The card is active until you cancel or suspend it
  • You can start, cancel or re-start your paycheck deduction at any time
  • Money on the card is not refundable 

MetroPass

Unlimited monthly card for bus or light rail

  • Pre-tax cost is $49.80 per month
  • The card covers up to $3.25 per ride. For fare over $3.25 you can load additional money onto your card. Add value online with MetroTransit
  • Pre-tax cost comes out of your paycheck until you cancel or suspend the card
  • If you cancel, you can sign up again
  • You can suspend the card for up to three months at a time
  • You start and end MetroPass at the start or end of a calendar month
  • Once you enroll you must participate for at least one month

Enroll in MetroPass

  • If you sign up by the 13th of the month (by 10 a.m.), your card takes effect the next month. For example, if you sign up June 10 your card starts in July.
  • Otherwise your card takes effect a month later. For example, if you sign up June 17 your card starts in August.
  • Enroll in APEX to start your paycheck deduction

Cancel or suspend MetroPass

Complete and return the MetroPass cancellation/suspend form (DOCX)

When cancellation or suspension takes effect:

  • If you cancel or suspend by the 23rd of the month, your card stops working the next month.(For example, if you cancel June 10 your card stops working in July.
  • Otherwise your card stops working a month later. For example, if you cancel June 25 your card stops working in August. 
  • Your paycheck deductions stop the month your card stops working

Lost, stolen or damaged MetroPass cards

  • Call the HR Service Center at 612-348-7855
  • It takes up to three weeks to get the new card
  • A $5 replacement fee comes out of your paycheck

Go-To Card

Stored value card of $10, $20, or $30 

Card options:

  • $10 stored value: pre-tax cost of $6 per paycheck
  • $20 stored value: pre-tax cost of $12 per paycheck 
  • $30 stored value: pre-tax cost of $18 per paycheck

Enroll in Go-To Card

  1. Buy a Go-To Card from Metro Transit:
  2. Enroll in APEX to start your paycheck deduction.

Cancel Go-To Card

  • Cancel your bus card deduction in APEX (it takes 1-2 pay periods to process)

Lost or stolen Go-To Card

  1. Report your lost or stolen card to Metro Transit.
  2. Get a new Go-To Card and update your 16-digit card number right away in APEX.

Limited Mobility Fare card

For employees with a disability or health condition

  • 31-day card for bus or light rail
  • Pre-tax cost of $21.60 per month for a 31-day card
  • You must be certified by Metro Transit to qualify. See full requirements (PDF)
  • Enroll in APEX to start your paycheck deduction

Parking and vanpools

Paying for parking with pre-tax dollars

You can set aside money pre-tax when using your car to get to and from work, This applies to parking the county doesn’t already pay for or reimburse.

Parking in lots or at parking meters

  • You can enroll in a flexible spending account that allows you to get reimbursed for these expenses
  • Once enrolled you must re-enroll during open enrollment to continue participating
  • You can set aside up to $260 per month pre-tax
  • You must submit reimbursement within 180 days of the expense
  • Enrollment form (PDF)

You can change your deduction amount any time during the year or stop participation if you:

  • Change job sites
  • Change primary residence
  • Change work schedule or hours
  • Go on leave or vacation
  • Experience an event that changes your need or cost for parking
  • Change or stop your deduction (PDF)

You must submit the change within 30 days of the event.

Reimbursement form for parking in lots or parking meters

Contract parking in county-owned lots with automatic deduction

  • To set up a county contract call Facility Services at 612-543-1220
  • Once you have a contract your deduction automatically comes out of your paycheck pre-tax
  • You can’t use a flexible spending account to set aside these pre-tax dollars

Metro vanpool

You can set aside up to $130 per month pre-tax for commuting to work in a vanpool.

MetroTransit vanpool program

Bike commuting

Wellness points for biking

Reimbursement for bike expenses

Get reimbursed for bike repair, maintenance and purchases. Use Trade Time for Fitness

Bike parking downtown Minneapolis

Paid secured bike lockers

Contracts run from April 1 to February 28 of the next year.

Locations:

  • Government Center (For all county employees)
  • Central Library (For Central Library employees only)
  • Family Justice Center (For Family Justice Center employees only)
  • 1800 Chicago (For 1800 Chicago employees only)
  • Seward neighborhood probation (For Seward employees only)

Cost: $70 per year ($60 locker fee plus $10 refundable key deposit)

Requesting a bike locker:

  • Put your name on a waiting list by calling 612-543-3949
  • If the list has more people than available lockers, a lottery is held 

Free secured bike corrals

Health Services Building, 5th Street and Portland Avenue, Minneapolis:

  • You must sign up for a corral permit
  • Any employee can sign up
  • The permit is free
  • You can sign up in early spring each year
  • The permit lasts from April 1 to March 31
  • Interested bikers can call 612-543-3949

South Minneapolis service center 2215 East Lake Street, Minneapolis

  • Employees only
  • No cost or application
  • Use your building access badge

Employee group rides

During bike-friendly weather, you can join your colleagues for group bike rides.

College, travel, child care, special services and discounts

Tuition reimbursement

Employees who earn benefits may get reimbursed for tuition.

Amount of tuition

You may get up to $5,250 per year for:

  • Courses that relate to your current job, a possible promotion or another county job
  • Courses at accredited colleges, universities, or other organizations if approved by Human Resources
  • Tuition, surcharges, lab fees, books, required memberships, and required activities

To be eligible for tuition reimbursement

  • Your department must authorize the course in APEX before it begins
  • You must provide a detailed tuition receipt showing course cost plus all scholarships or grants, and payments
  • For graded courses, you must earn a C or better
  • For ungraded courses, you must earn a Satisfactory or Pass
  • You must show a course transcript
  • Complete all required forms in APEX

Questions

See your supervisor or your department's tuition contact.

College savings plan

  • You can do payroll deductions to save for your children's college
  • Deductions are post-tax

Enroll and set up payroll deduction

  1. Enroll in the Minnesota College Savings Plan
  2. Email a copy of your completed payroll deduction form to the benefits office at hr.benefits@hennepin.us.
  3. We’ll enter your deduction in APEX. 

Change or stop deduction

  1. Complete the payroll deduction form (PDF).
  2. Email a copy of your completed form to the benefits office at hr.benefits@hennepin.us.
  3. We’ll change your deduction in APEX.

Travel emergency assistance 

  • Eligible employees: those with the county's life insurance and their dependents up to age 26
  • Applies when you travel more than 100 miles from home
  • Get free trip planning and emergency help
  • Keep the contact card with you during travel
  • Print and sign the contact card in the brochure (PDF)

Child care discount

County employees can get a 10% discount on child care. Visit New Horizon Academy.

Minnesota Benefits Association

You can buy benefits through post-tax payroll deductions including:

  • Auto lease and purchase program
  • Annuities
  • Legal services
  • Life insurance
  • Pet insurance
  • Long term care insurance

Enrollment

Minnesota Employee Recreation & Services Council (MERSC)

  • Get discounts for services, tickets and retail items
  • You can save at restaurants, on travel and entertainment, health and wellness, and home and professional services
  • For more information visit MERSC

Public service loan forgiveness

Possible loan forgiveness for employees with federal student loans 

You may qualify if:

Beginning the process:

  1. Complete the certification form (PDF)
  2. Send the completed form to the APEX Service Center, either at mail code 126 or by email hr.transactions@hennepin.us  
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