Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.
We've moved! Come join us at our new show page.
The cushy life out in the expansive offices of Silicon Valley comes with lots of bonuses, not all of them cash.
"I love massages. I'm a spa queen," says one employee in a Google company video. "We have yoga. We have pilates," says another.
But there's no such thing as a free lunch. Big tech companies are in fierce competition to attract top talent, and publicize their perks all over the recruitment pages of their websites.
"The food here by the way is great," says yet another Google employee in that company promo. "There is any type of amazing cuisine, even better than some of the restaurants in New York."
As the April 15 tax deadline nears, the Wall Street Journal reports there is a debate loming about whether all those freebies should to be taxable.
The IRS has stringent guidelines on what employers can feed their employees. The test of whether those meals count as income is a matter of convenience. If you work on an oil rig in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico, you cannot exactly run out for the burger. So the tax man says your company can feed you tax-free. But tech companies are often in places with plenty of restaurant options.
But companies like Facebook heavily promote their work culture, and perks are a large a part of that.
"I really feel like Facebook sometimes is a utopia in like the best of ways. The cool thing about the Facebook approach to benefits is, you know, like they're really focused on removing stress from our daily lives, so it's things that make it easier for me to focus," says a Facebook employee in a company video.
Being together, working together – and, yes, eating together.
Tax attorney Tom Cryan says the IRS has been investigating company perks for years, like the way high-level executives fly on corporate jets for personal use. But meals for the common techie has not been a target until recently.
"It hasn't been seen as this big abuse area," said Cryan. "But the law's the law, so they're going to look into this when they audit you, and the dollars can be huge depending on the size of the company."
Notify me of new comments via email.
The Lead with Jake Tapper draws not only on Tapper’s deep knowledge of politics and national issues, but also seeks to examine and advance stories across a wide range of topics that demonstrate his own curiosities and interests. Compelling headlines come from around the country and the globe, from politics to money, sports to popular culture, based on news drivers of the day.
The Lead with Jake Tapper airs weekdays at 4 p.m. ET.
Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.
Join 134 other followers