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Road Warrior Newsletter

November 10, 2017

Dear NJGCA Member:

Thank you for reading this week's NJGCA Road Warrior!

Here is what you will find in this edition:

• *Very Important Stage II Administration Order Issued*; Election Results Mean Trouble for Businesses; Marketplace Observations

- Monmouth County: Gas Station and Repair Shop Business Since 2001
- Asbury Park: Commercial Building for Sale. Possible Sale of Business
- Bergen County: Shell Gas Station with 6-Bay Repair Shop for Sale

Franchisees to Boycott Annual 7-Eleven Trade Show
NYT: In a City of Firsts, Hoboken Elects a Sikh as Mayor
Sunoco Moves Closer to Substantial Retail Exit
Trump administration moves ahead with Obama menu-label law
Texas Gas Station Owners Fighting Price Gouging Claims

• Entire Emission Repair Technician Course - Starting Nov. 7th

• The Amato Agency: Garage Insurance and Workers Compensation! 
• ATS Environmental: Confidence in your Tank & Compliance Testing

• Bellomo Fuel: Exceptional Service, Aggressive Petroleum Marketing
• CBIZ Insurance: Our Business is Growing Yours!

Gill Energy: Getting you There!
• Lending Capital: "Commercial Loans Made Easy" Program
• Salomone Brothers: Tank Testing and Environmental Compliance
• TMP Energy Solutions: Another Way to Save On Your Energy Bills

• Participate in the NJGCA PAC today and help us keep our Agenda rolling in Trenton!

*NEW*Energy Information Agency Weekly Retail Gasoline Prices





I delayed delivery of this week’s Road Warrior because I was anticipating some news which finally arrived last night.  I alluded to this a few weeks ago because I was told that an Administrative Order from Bob Martin, the NJDEP Commissioner, was coming soon.  Yesterday ,Commissioner Martin did sign an Administrative Order that will permit any gasoline retail location that is replacing dispensers, to install non-Stage II dispensersLast week he signed the final rule which will not go in to effect until the end of December.  Many of you have pumps on order but have been unable to install them because permission had not been granted to dismantle Stage II systems. THE ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER ONLY APPLIES TO THOSE WHO ARE REPLACING PUMPS PRIOR TO THE EFFECTVE DATE OF THE NEW RULE.  Once the new rule is in effect then ALL locations may begin dismantling their Stage II equipment.  It is very important that any dismantling of Stage II systems be done in accordance with the new rule.  To read the Administrative Order click HERE.  The AO will contain a link to the new rules.  Your contractor MUST follow these guidelines. 
As you all should know, the election with the most implications for NJGCA members, (and all small businesses) was the Governor’s race. As expected, Democrat Phil Murphy rolled over Republican Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno. I have spelled out some of the major differences between them in past communications, but now the results are staring us in the face.  On Tuesday, January 16, 2018, Phil Murphy will be sworn in as the 56th Governor of New Jersey, yet our work has already begun. Also, as expected, Democrats not only retained control of both the Assembly and the Senate, but they increased their margins in both houses.  I'm trying to figure out which harmful or burdensome action the new Legislature and Governor will team up to impose upon us first.
Here are some of the things that Governor-elect Murphy bragged about in his victory speech on Tuesday night: taxes will be raised by at least $1.3 billionIf your house-hold income exceeds $250,000/year, hold onto your wallet because you will feel a heavy impact.  All of the taxes and fees that your business currently pays can be expected to increase significantly.  Another issue of importance that was bragged about in the victory speech is the planned increase to minimum wage. Governor-elect Murphy has also been clear that he plans to step up legislation and enforcement of current environmental and labor regulations. I fear that wage-theft, paid family leave and mandatory paid sick leave legislation will be quickly passed and signed into law. I also expect that all enforcement agencies, especially the Department of Environmental Protection, will be instructed to hand out as many fines as possible, since the State is desperate for additional revenues. If there is one thing I’ve learned over the years, it’s that when the wrong party controls everything, they will seek to make you their piggy bank and funding mechanism.  NJGCA will be fighting as hard as possible.  It will be very important for you to pay attention to all communications that are sent to you requesting that you reach out to your legislators!
On the bright side, all but one of the legislators that we consider friends to NJGCA were re-elected.  NJ also elected its first South Asian to the State Senate.  At this point, it is too early to tell what issues the outgoing legislature may try to sneak past us in lame duck, but I do hope to have a better idea of their intentions by next week.  
Switching gears now, I need to quickly mention changes that I am sure you are noticing every day in the marketplace. At a time of the year when most analysts, and even myself, thought that gas prices would be declining, they have been rising instead.  I'm a bit baffled by this, and can only attribute the rise in gas prices to the unexpected rise in the price of crude oil.  A barrel of crude oil is now over $55, which is about $7 or $8 higher than I expected it would be. I’m also baffled by why crude oil is at this price, since there is still a nationwide abundance, and I can only attribute it to a cut back in production implemented by the OPEC nations finally having its intended effect. I still believe that unless overall demand increases significantly, prices will drop. But since the current marketplace is operating contrary to my previous expectations, I’m not betting on my future predictions being correct.
Thanks for reading -- See you next week!

Sal Risalvato
Executive Director



All classes held at NJGCA HQ -- 4900 Route 33 West, Wall Township, NJ 07753

Emission Technician Education Program (ETEP) - Entire Repair Technician Curriculum - Starts Nov. 7th
Stop turning away work!!  The New Jersey Inspection Program requires vehicles that fail emissions inspection to go to a Licensed Certified Emission Inspector for Repairs!
 When the new program begins, a list of Certified Emission Repair Shops will be given to vehicle owners! If you want your business name on the list – make sure you have a Certified Licensed Emission Repair Technician & an Emission Repair Facility License!

This class runs on Tuesdays and Thursday from 2:00 PM to 10:00 PM for
FIVE consecutive weeks.
Class begins on Tuesday, November 7th and ends on Tuesday December 12th.

Fees for members are $2,195 and non-members are $2,495.
$500 deposit is due at time of registration.

Click HERE for registration form.

Emissions Inspector Training Class - One Day Only!
TUESDAY, November 14th -- 7am to 3pm

Want one of your technicians to become a NJ Emissions Inspector? We can help! Our one-day class will provide all the information for becoming a NJ Emissions Inspector, and the State will administer the written test the very same day at our offices!  We are offering the class: Tuesday, November 14 from 7:00am to 3:00pm. Cost $275.
Click HERE for the registration form.





Business For Sale: Monmouth County gas station and repair shop in business since 2001 is for sale. Owner is relocating out of state and is interested in selling business and equipment. Owner is open to limited financing. Business has a strong 10 year lease. The building has two repair bays and the gas pumps are leased to a large independent tenant. Repair shop business currently employs a Manager and two full-time Technicians. For inquiries and more info, please call Mark at 908-670-7798.

Commercial Building in Asbury Park, Possible Sale of Business, Too!  For listing information, please click HERE.
Shell Gas Station with 6-Bay Repair Shop for Sale in Bergen County!

Business established in 1980. Fully equipped repair shop with 5 lifts including an alignment rack with a 2-year-old Hunter Hawkeye alignment machine. New Hunter tire machine & wheel balancer. AAA aproved and very busy.
Towing business also available which includes 3 Freightliner/JerrDan flatbeds (2015, 2016 & 2017), a 2012 Dodge crew cab wrecker with a Jerrdan Quick Pick & dual cable winch & 2 service trucks (a 2012 GMC 2500 utility truck with a plow & a 2014 Ford transit battery/service vehicle).

Pumping over 1,000,000 gallons per year. 100x300 lot with plenty of parking. Excellent location!!! Call Jim @ 201-851-3084.




Franchisees to Boycott Annual 7-Eleven Trade Show
The presidents of all 43 7-Eleven franchise owners associations, which represent the interests of nearly 7,000 franchised U.S. convenience-store locations, have voted unanimously not to attend 7-Eleven’s annual convention and trade show in 2018. The boycott of the 7-Eleven Experience convention, announced in a press release issued Nov. 9 by the National Coalition of Associations of 7-Eleven Franchisees (NCASEF), is intended to send a message related to a lawsuit filed in October against the retailer.  In the lawsuit filed on Oct. 12, members of NCASEF, an independent organization that represents the individual franchisee associations, alleged that franchisor 7-Eleven Inc. (SEI) has been “chipping away at their profits, increasing their costs and exercising more control over what is supposed to be an independent operation.” The plaintiffs claim that the franchisor has not fulfilled its promise of treating franchisees as independent contractors and business owners. The franchisees held the vote during a recent NCASEF board meeting. “Our FOA representatives spoke loud and clear and the coalition listened. They voted to urge members [to] stay away from the 7-Eleven Experience and now the coalition wants to deliver that message to all,” said Rehan Hashmi, vice chairman of NCASEF. “The relationship between SEI and its franchisees is no longer evenhanded and that is hurting our members and their livelihood.” According to Hashmi, 7-Eleven Inc. closed its regular channels of communication after franchisees in California filed the federal lawsuit. “If SEI truly wants to recognize and celebrate its franchisees as the marketers of the 7-Eleven Experience claim, it shouldn’t cut off communications. Franchise owners have invested their lives in this brand and we want to prosper, but we can’t if our relationship with SEI remains one-sided,” he said.
NYT: In a City of Firsts, Hoboken Elects a Sikh as Mayor
Hoboken, N.J., is a city of firsts, its proud residents like to say. Some historians say the first organized baseball game was played there in 1846. The first zipper was believed to have been invented there, too. And now the city of some 55,000 people on the Hudson River can boast another first: Councilman Ravi Bhalla on Tuesday became the first Sikh elected mayor in New Jersey, and one of only a few Sikhs to become mayor of an American city. Mayor-elect Bhalla, a 17-year resident of the city, had won elections in 2009 and 2013 to the City Council and twice served as its president. He was endorsed for mayor by the incumbent, Dawn Zimmer, who announced in June that she would not seek re-election. Mr. Bhalla and Ms. Zimmer are both Democrats, though Hoboken’s mayoral elections are nonpartisan. But even his deep roots and prior success among the city’s voters did not make Mr. Bhalla immune from racist attacks. On Friday night, doctored campaign fliers appeared on car windows in Hoboken featuring a picture of Mr. Bhalla, who wears the turban that is traditional to his faith. Above his picture was the message: “Don’t let TERRORISM take over our Town!” “It is not what Hoboken is about, it is not reflective of our community,” he said. “It’s just unfortunate.” He went on to win Tuesday, with 34 percent of the vote in a six-way race. Of the 14,000 votes cast, he received 4,781, according to the Hudson County Board of Elections. There are no runoffs so a plurality was enough to win.
Sunoco Moves Closer to Substantial Retail Exit
Sunoco LP is nearing the end of the first leg in its journey to become a fuel supply-focused company. "As you know, we are currently in the process of transforming Sunoco. Our roadmap starts with completing an efficient divestment of our company-operated stores," soon-to-be CEO Joe Kim, currently president and chief operating officer, said during the partnership's third-quarter earnings call on Nov. 8.  The transformation also involves optimizing Sunoco's overhead. "We will right-size our overhead for the going-forward business and, just as importantly, position us for efficient growth for the future," he said.  Kim will take the reins as CEO when Bob Owens, current chief executive, steps down at the end of the year, as CSNews Online previously reported. The first divestiture move consists of the sale of 1,108 convenience stores to 7-Eleven Inc. for $3.3 billion. These stores, which are part of an asset purchase agreement, are located in 18 states.  In addition to the convenience stores, the transaction includes the associated trade-marks and intellectual property of Sunoco's Laredo Taco Co. and Stripes brands. As part of the transaction, Dallas-based Sunoco will enter into a 15-year take-or-pay fuel supply agreement with a 7-Eleven subsidiary, under which Sunoco will supply approximately 2.2 billion gallons of fuel annually.
Trump administration moves ahead with Obama menu-label law
The Trump administration is moving ahead with Obama-era requirements to post calorie counts in restaurants, supermarkets, convenience stores and pizza delivery chains nationwide next year. Despite years of opposition by some food sellers, the Food and Drug Administration is offering only minor compromises to industry complaints about the difficulties of displaying calories at takeout chains, self-service buffets and other non-restaurant food locations. The FDA posted a preliminary guidance online Tuesday to help businesses comply with the law. Trump appointees have delayed or upended regulations passed by the Obama administration including rules for water pollution, fuel emissions and policing for-profit universities. But the menu labeling rules, championed by former first lady Michelle Obama, appear on track to take effect next May after years of delays. Behind the law is the idea that people may think twice about buying their daily doughnut at the gas station if they see how many hundreds of calories it contains. In a key move, the FDA rejected requests from pizza chains, including Domino's Pizza, which wanted to post calorie information on their websites instead of each store location, arguing that most customers don't visit their physical locations. However, the agency said stores have a variety of options for displaying calorie counts beyond traditional menu boards, including electronic kiosks, tablet devices and even paper menus. "At first glance, there appears to be some progress, showing that the FDA is listening to concerns," Domino's spokesman Tim McIntyre said in an email. However, he added that the company still wants Congress to intervene to change the law. Industry groups are backing legislation in the House of Representatives that addresses many of their concerns.
Texas Gas Station Owners Fighting Price Gouging Claims
Texas gas station owners who have been accused of price gouging in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey are preparing to fight back, reported CBS DFW. They claim they were falsely accused, partially due to misunderstanding of price signage. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton recently announced that the state's Consumer Protection Business sent 127 notices of violation to businesses that raised gas prices to $3.99 or higher per gallon during and after the hurricane, as CSNews Online reported. Price gouging can carry civil penalties of up to $20,000 per violation and up to $250,000 per violation for victims over the age of 65 under the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act. However, Paul Hardin, president of the Texas Food and Fuel Association, stands behind many of the gas stations that received the notices. Both the association and the Texas Attorney General's offices warned gas station owners about the consequences of price gouging, and Hardin believes that most acted on that warning and even took a loss to avoid the appearance of gouging. "They were selling at below cost for fear of being accused of price gouging," Hardin said. "The price was going up and up and up, and they just didn't want to put the price of that of what the market was actually bearing because they would be fried by consumers." Many price-gouging complaints were made anonymously or based on social media posts. Hardin believes some reporters misunderstood the posted price of $9.99 per gallon, which some gas station owners used to indicate they had run out of fuel.




TMP Energy Solutions

Another Way to Save on Your Energy Bills

We have had a number of NJGCA members successfully reduce their rate per kWh signing up through our energy saving program. We know it's difficult to collect 12 months worth of previous electric bills to get an "accurate" analysis when comparing a variable rate to a fixed rate, but we now have another option available. 

This new solution is a power purchase option; the other program is still in full force and has saved members thousands of dollars. If you sign up for the power purchase option, you will be grouped with other NJGCA members until the minimum kW demand is acquired. By pooling the member's usage together, you will be able to take advantage, as large energy users do, and receive a lower kWh rate.

Each member will receive their own contract. Each member is responsible to sign and return the agreement the day it is received in order to secure the price for their group.

Please do your due diligence, so when you receive the proposal and the agreement you will be able to make an intelligent decision.

If by chance, you still want us to assess you bills, to give you a price to compare, we will require 12 months of your most recent utility bills.

There are no bills required, but we would still like to have one bill per meter on file to check account #'s, meter #'s  service addresses and other pertinent information incase there is a problem.

The term of the agreement is for 12 months. During this term period, you will have price protection against any energy price increases along with a low fixed kWh rate.

If you are interested in becoming part of this power purchase option, please contact Greg Cannon at the NJGCA.

Remember when you sign up your energy through the NJGCA Energy Program, TMP makes a considerable donation to the NJGCA Scholarship Fund through their proceeds. This has no affect on your rate, and costs you nothing out of pocket.

We hope to help hundreds of NJGCA members reduce their utility costs by participating in this and our other cost reduction programs.  Our purpose, in the endeavor, is to help NJGCA members lower their energy costs while supporting the NJGCA Scholarship Fund. 

Contact GREG CANNON at 732-256-9646 or email Greg at greg@njgca.org. Mention that you are interested in saving money on your energy bills. NJGCA & TMP Energy Solutions will handle all the rest. 




Promoting our agenda in Trenton is of utmost importance to NJGCA and our members.

However, in order to truly affect the debate, we must ensure our friends in the Legislature are re-elected. It is for this reason that your Association has established the NJGCA PAC.

For too long, the weight of funding our Political Action Committee, the arm of the Association responsible for political donations, has rested upon a few. This is not only unfair to those few members who have shouldered this burden, but means we are not utilizing our full strength to affect the debate in Trenton.

To truly understand the importance of supporting our allies, consider our successes in Trenton:

We made history in getting FIRST RIGHT OF REFUSAL signed into law!
We have built large support for RIGHT TO REPAIR and got it passed out of the Assembly
We defended your small business against the false accusations of Attorney General Anne Milgram
We gained wide support to move New Jersey to an all PIF Inspection System and close the CIF lanes
...and MUCH MORE!!

In each instance, we achieved these goals with the help of our friends in the Legislature!

If every member contributes just $100.00 we will be able to provide the help necessary to ensure victory for our allies. 

4900 Route 33 West, Suite 100
Wall Township, NJ 07753
Please make your donation payable to NJGCA PAC

I understand that times are tough for all NJGCA members, but this is just as important as any battle we have fought in the past.

We have made great progress in Trenton. I hope that you will answer the call. 


*NEW* Energy Information Agency Weekly Retail Gasoline Prices

Each week, the Energy Information Administration publishes a list of average gasoline prices for the previous three weeks. NJGCA will begin including this list with the Weekly Road Warrior.  Remember, these prices are reflective of self-serve everywhere except NJ.