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Road Warrior Newsletter


May 3, 2018

Dear NJGCA Member:

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

Here is what you will find in this edition:

• Menu Labeling Legislation; An Update On The Gas Tax; Paid Sick Leave Legislation Signed; Costly ($2M) Wage Violation At South Jersey Gas Stations; Class C Operator Training, Diner Tour May 16th 

- 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

• Oil Gains Slightly After Fed Sees Economy Growing At A 'Moderate Rate'
• Do You Approve Of Towns Banning Plastic Bags?
• 17 U.S. States Sue Trump Administration Over Vehicle Emissions
• Fuel Sales Increased Nearly 15% in 2017

• What Will the Future of Mobility Mean for the C-store Industry?
• Pruitt Defends Decision To Ease Fuel Economy Standards
Fueling Today Is Not Just a Fill-Up, It's Gotta Be an Experience

• Emissions Inspector Training Class, TUESDAY, May 8th

• 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!

Energy Information Agency Weekly Retail Gasoline Prices





Every once in a while, we have a weekly communication that is a bit more legislative heavy; this is definitely one of those weeks. Bear with me as there is a lot going on in Trenton and Washington:
As our convenience store members are probably aware, new menu labeling legislation will go into effect next Monday on May 7th and compliance will be required. We talked about menu labeling quite a bit last year, it looked as if we were going to prevail through Congress to have them intervene and stop the FDA from doing this. All efforts have failed, so this is what you need to know: 
  • This legislation will cover any retail establishment with 20 or more locations that sell food that is intended for consumption immediately after purchase
  • If your business is part of a chain with 20 or more locations with the same name regardless of ownership, this applies to you
  • The locations that must be in compliance offer largely the same menu items throughout the locations
  • There are some exceptions for temporary items, general use items (ex: milk, condiments, etc.)
  • These establishments must declare the calorie count of menu items adjacent to the name or price of the item, up to the nearest five calorie increment
We will have more information and detailed instructions together shortly on our website, stay tuned for that information.

Several of you have called our offices recently because you may have heard in the news that if the governor reverses the sales tax decrease implemented in November 2016, that this will trigger a repeal of the 23˘ gas tax that was implemented at the same time. Yes, this is correct. The law that was passed increasing the gas tax and decreasing the sales tax did have a poison pill provision that said if a future legislature tries to eradicate any of the tax deductions, this would automatically eliminate the gas tax increase. The new governor definitely plans to increase the sales tax back to 7% on July 1. However, before you all start celebrating, I must be clear: it is extremely unlikely that the gas tax increase will also be repealed as required by law. Why? Because there is enough latitude in the way the law is written that will give the treasurer discretion not to eliminate the gas tax increase. Is it legal? Can it be challenged? The answer to both is yes, but I also don't think that it is likely to be challenged. Here's why: the legislature can simply convene and pass a law that repeals the poison pill revision in the 2016 gas tax legislation. So anybody making a legal challenge will be wasting their time and money as the legislature will surely enact that legislation and the governor will surely sign it. There is no way they will give up $1.5 billion in revenues. Also, little known to you is the fact that this discretion has already been used by the treasurer in our favor and at my request. I said little last year after I was handed a memo by NJGCA staffer Eric Blomgren outlining how there was enough of a shortfall in the revenues being taken in by the newly enacted gas tax that would result in a 10˘ increase on October 1 of last year. We aggressively worked behind the scenes with the legislature’s leadership, the governor's office, and the treasurer to find loopholes that would allow the treasurer to use discretion and not increase the gas tax by 10˘ a gallon. Leadership in both parties of the legislature, the governor, and the treasurer were stunned and alarmed when we brought our findings to their attention; as every branch of government missed a provision in the law they all agreed to. This was clearly an accident that all of Trenton missed, but NJGCA found. Since I am familiar with the panic that ensued in Trenton for six months and stood by as they all agreed to allow the treasurer to use his discretion, I am quite certain that they can use the same discretionary action to eradicate the poison pill provision of the 2016 gas tax increase. Right now, the real concern that I have is with the way the finances are shaping up, there could be an additional 1-4˘ increase in October unless we can convince the treasurer to once again use the discretion that we believe is afforded to her. Once again, we are working quietly to resolve this issue, and are planning to meet with the state treasurer in the coming weeks.
Another big item I’m sure you all have been following closely is the paid sick leave legislation. Governor Murphy signed the bill yesterday (May 2nd) and it will go into effect October 29th, making New Jersey the 10th state to require paid sick leave. You all will be expected to comply with this law and be familiar with the policies. As this bill is lengthy and detailed, we will give you a full breakdown on how to be in compliance with this new mandate in the very near future. Even employers that already give all of their employees 40+ hours of paid leave per year will need to update their policies in order to be in compliance.
Also in the news this week, a group of south jersey gas station owners were recently investigated by the Department of Labor task force that is still in New Jersey. One of the station owners with multiple locations involved in the task force investigation is a former member of NJGCA. In fact, it appears he dropped his membership around the time we started sending memos to our members about the USDOL task force in the state and constant reminders on how to properly pay your employees. The fines and penalties to this group of gas stations has totaled just over $2M. I’m wondering if this dealer would have found himself in this situation had he continued his membership with NJGCA and read our weekly communications, or attended the two USDOL seminars that we held. I will keep reminding you: sooner rather than later everyone needs NJGCA. It is a shame this operator chose not to participate and invest in our very effective association.

I want to remind our members with underground storage tanks that severe fines and penalties are attached to not meeting the minimum training requirements established by the EPA by October 13, 2018. NJGCA has conveniently provided you with an online Class C training program for your employees that meets state requirements. Please be sure to take advantage of this program as soon as possible. Also, for those of you with underground storage tanks, you can check the status of your UST registration as well as the expiration date using NJDEP's UST Registration Information Lookup report

Finally, a reminder that our first diner tour of 2018 is scheduled for Wednesday, May 16th at 9:30 AM at the Skylark Diner in Edison. This is your opportunity to raise any questions or concerns regarding your business, the industry, or policy happening in Trenton and Washington. Please let Michelle know if you can make it by emailing her at michelle@njgca.org. If you are unable to make this meeting, we also have dates locked down on June 13th at the Suburban Diner in Paramus and on July 18th at the Shore Diner in Egg Harbor Township. I hope to see you there.

That’s all for this week,  

Sal Risalvato
Executive Director


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

Emissions Inspector Training Class - One Day Only!
TUESDAY, May 8th, 2018 -- 7 AM to 3 PM
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, May 8th from 7:00am to 3:00pm. Cost $275.
Click HERE for the registration form, and please send Debbie Hill a copy of your drivers license with 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.




Oil Gains Slightly After Fed Sees Economy Growing At A 'Moderate Rate'
Oil prices strengthened slightly ahead of the settlement Wednesday as the Federal Reserve held interest rates steady and expressed confidence that a recent rise in inflation would be sustained. The Fed's rate-setting committee also downplayed a recent slowdown in economic and job growth, saying that activity had been expanding at a moderate rate and job gains, on average, had been strong in recent months. Oil demand is closely tied to broader indicators of economic growth.

Do You Approve Of Towns Banning Plastic Bags?
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. population uses 380 billion plastic bags in one year. Point Pleasant Beach wants to make a dent in that number. The Jersey Shore town has introduced an ordinance to ditch plastic shopping bags. Plastic store shopping bags ranked 8th on the list of types of debris collected by volunteers with Clean Ocean Action on its cleanup days in 2017.

17 U.S. States Sue Trump Administration Over Vehicle Emissions
California and a group of 16 other states on Tuesday challenged the Trump administration’s decision to revise strict U.S. vehicle emissions and fuel efficiency rules put in place under former President Barack Obama. The 17 states and the District of Columbia filed a lawsuit in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia challenging the Environmental Protection Agency’s decision in April to declare U.S. vehicle emissions and fuel efficiency rules through 2025 “not appropriate.” The legal challenge comes as Democrats and environmental advocates vow to aggressively challenge the Trump administration’s plans to weaken the vehicle rules touted by the Obama administration as one of its biggest climate actions.

Fuel Sales Increased Nearly 15% in 2017
Attendees at the NACS State of the Industry Summit heard firsthand that convenience stores sales overall surged 9.3% to $601.1 billion in 2017, led by a 14.9% increase in fuel sales. The sales increase at convenience stores was largely because of higher gas prices in 2017 (up 12.8% to $2.38) and a 1.9% increase in gallons sold. Meanwhile, fuel gross margins in 2017 increased to 22.0 cents per gallon. Paired with increased sales volume overall, fuel gross profits increased 11.7% per store. Convenience stores sell an estimated 80% of the fuel purchased in the country and while fuel sales account for 61% of sales dollars, fuels margins are still relatively slim and fuels only account for 38% of total profit dollars at convenience stores.

What Will the Future of Mobility Mean for the C-Store Industry?
Much is being debated these days about the future of fuel retailing. However, the future of fuel retailing really begins even before the issue of fueling itself. Where the conversation truly starts is the future of mobility: How do people get around? "People are not owning their own cars. They may be using their Uber and they never stop at a convenience store with the driver. So, how do we provide convenience on the go for people? How do we deliver to their own vehicles?" asks Roy Williamson, vice president of Mobility at BP. Retailers must prepare for the shift in who owns cars and how they are used. Increasingly, fewer millennials and younger people are getting driver's licenses. Even in areas without a reliable public transit infrastructure, many people feel they don't need a vehicle and see the cost of services such as Uber and Lyft as an acceptable expenditure.
Pruitt Defends Decision To Ease Fuel Economy Standards
The EPA's proposal to reset fuel economy standards for 2022-25 model year vehicles will be heavily motivated by consumer demand, administrator Scott Pruitt told a House panel Thursday. Pruitt, reiterating why he decided this month to reverse the Obama administration's standards, said pollution can be reduced more by increasing the fuel efficiency of cars and trucks consumers want to buy rather than trying to force sales of highly efficient vehicles. "We ought to endeavor as a country to set standards for lower emissions on cars that people actually want to buy," Pruitt said. "And what's happened is we've created these arbitrary levels that has put a certain sector of cars in the marketplace that no one is purchasing, which means they stay on older vehicles and defeats the purpose of the rule."
Fueling Today Is Not Just a Fill-Up, It's Gotta Be an Experience

The basic way motorists in most states fill up their vehicles today is not that much different from a generation or two ago. A driver notices he or she is low on gas, pulls into a convenience store or gas station, gets out of their vehicle, lifts the nozzle off the pump and inserts it into their fuel tank. Once full, the driver pays and pulls away. It could be 1978 or it could be 2018. One major element that has changed, however, is what motorists expect from the fueling experience — and their expectations are only getting higher. "I like to think back to 50 years ago when my grandad was filling up and he would have bought fuel and maybe lubricants from a gas station. Fast forward to today and we are still discussing those fuels, which we will always be famous for, but consumers want so much more," noted Nicola Buck, vice president of marketing, Fuels North America, at BP plc. On their wish lists? Cleaner energy. Technology. Apps. Convenience. Today’s fueling industry must change to meet these new expectations.


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. 
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.