May 18, 2012
Dear NJGCA Member:
Thank you for reading this week's NJGCA Road Warrior!
Here's what you'll find in this edition:
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S MESSAGE: GREETINGS & SAL-UTATIONS!
•Vapor Recovery, Right to Repair, Inspection Stickers, Natural Gas, and more!
NEWS AROUND THE STATE
•Report: Obama to press G8 nations to back oil release
•North Dakota becomes nation’s second-leading oil producer, surpassing Alaska but still trailing Texas
•Kwik Trip Natural Gas Debuts
•NJGCA in the News: New Jersey gas tax unchanged as transportation costs rise
•Regency Property Appraisers: Serving all your appraisal needs in NJ, NY, and beyond!
TRAINING CLASS SCHEDULE
•Interested taking a class? Call us today!
MEET THE FOLKS AT LIBERTY GAS
•Looking for a new brand for your station? Take a look at the opportunity below!
MEMBER BENEFIT PARTNER MESSAGE
•TMP Energy Solutions: Another Way to Save On Your Energy Bills!
A SPECIAL MESSAGE FROM BELLOMO FUELS
•Serving New Jersey since 1910 -- Over 100 years of supplying gasoline retailers like YOU!
POLITICAL PARTICIPATON: THE NJGCA PAC
•Participate in the NJGCA PAC today and help us keep our Agenda rolling in Trenton!
THE MEMBER TOOL BOX
•On the NJGCA Homepage
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S MESSAGE: GREETINGS & SAL-UTATIONS!
RIGHT TO REPAIR,
NATURAL GAS, AND MORE…
Okay, okay I guess I’m a flip flopper since last week I said that there would be no Road Warrior this week and yet here we are. The simple fact is I just have too much to say, (not that there’s anything surprising about that) so I’m writing this from my hotel room in California, where I am staying to attend and speak at the Alternate Clean Technology Conference. So far it’s been really exciting here taking an in-depth look at all the incredible emerging technologies. This is all the stuff that I have been following and talking about for years, and it looks like it’s finally ready to come to fruition. I’ll have more to report on when I come back next week. From what I have seen, the CNG train is moving faster down the track than I originally thought. I might find myself repeating this sentence weekly until you want to choke me; “either you get on the alternate fuels train or the alternate fuels train will run you over.”
I made mention at the seminar we held on April 3rd and DEP officials have since confirmed that we are working on finally phasing out Stage II vapor recovery in New Jersey and we have hopes that by 2014 or 2015 at the latest Stage II vapor recovery will no longer be required in this state. This comes on the heels of the EPA determining that onboard refueling vapor recovery (ORVR) is widespread enough that the environment will be sufficiently protected without Stage II vapor recovery systems at gas pumps. Approximately 70% of all vehicles now have these systems, which capture gasoline vapors still in the empty tank and prevent it from being pushed into the air during a refill. The elimination of Stage II could save stations more than $3,000 a year. For more information CLICK HERE and to read the final rule from the EPA CLICK HERE. Last July I participated in a meeting with NJDEP officials and we discussed eliminating Phase II, but the EPA announcement this week gives me hope that the original timetable in NJ may be moved up.
You’ve probably noticed me mention Right to Repair a few times this year. In January Assemblyman Reed Gusciora (D-Mercer), who was profiled in our most recent edition of On the Road, reintroduced it to the New Jersey General Assembly as A-352. Asm Gusciora has been a champion of this cause for years now. In 2009 we came extremely close to making this law in New Jersey. In fact, we came closer than anyone had anywhere in the country. We felt good about ourselves, Right to Repair had failed miserably in every state it had been tried in as well as on the federal level; but we not only got a committee hearing, we got it passed by the committee and then passed overwhelmingly by the Assembly. It was on track for passage in the Senate and then to the Governor’s promised signature but the rug was pulled out from under us only days before it was to be heard by the Senate Commerce Committee.
The other state that was making a major push for Right to Repair was Massachusetts. We originally thought that New Jersey would pave the way for Massachusetts, but now it looks as though Mass. will pave the way for us. The Massachusetts legislation requires car manufacturers to provide access to all repair and diagnostic information and tools at a “non-discriminatory” price. Under this proposal, beginning in 2015 all independent repair professionals will have access through the internet to the manufacturer’s database containing all diagnostic and repair information. The technology already exists and is very similar to what is used to access emissions diagnostic information. The most common argument from the auto manufacturers trying holding this legislation back is that it will force them to divulge trade secrets. However, this new proposal simply requires automakers to sell the same information and tools to independent shops that they provide to their dealerships. Instead of paying huge sums for OEM scan tools from every manufacturer (estimated to cost around $210,000 to cover every company) you would just have one tool that you would use to sign up for subscriptions to access the data you need. So if you work on Toyotas several times per week, you would likely want to sign up for a yearly subscription for that information whereas if you only get two BMWs a month then you have the option to only subscribe to the information you need for the day. You can get more information about the Right to Repair effort in Massachusetts by CLICKING HERE.
I am very optimistic that Right to Repair will become law in Massachusetts. Why this time when it has failed every other time? Because this year Right to Repair advocates in Massachusetts are putting the issue on the ballot this November, right alongside the presidential election. Polls show overwhelming support among the public for Right to Repair, one poll showed 84% of Mass. voters supported it. They just launched their final petition signing drive to obtain the final 11,000 signatures they need to get on the ballot. Last December the coalition delivered over 80,000 signatures so another few thousand should be no problem. I am very hopeful about this effort. I fervently believe that once one state enacts Right to Repair and the world doesn’t end, the dominoes will begin to fall all over the country. We will push hard to lead the fight in the Legislature to make Right to Repair law in New Jersey.
However, to do so is going to require a lot of effort on your part. You will have to spend time and money to get this accomplished. I also need specific stories of times you had to give up business or charge a customer hundreds of dollars more because you couldn’t complete a repair due to the lack of easy access to the codes from the manufacturers. Its concrete examples and testimonies from real people that will get this legislation passed. You must remember it’s an investment, getting Right to Repair passed is necessary for the long-term survival of your repair business.
My hope is that some time in the next few months NJGCA will host a meeting of auto repair shops in the state to discuss the new inspection program, Right to Repair, and to revisit the investigations being performed by the US Department of Labor. I still have way too many of you calling and giving me scenarios that you use to pay employees in your shop that while I may personally think are ethical and fair, they are technically illegal. Many of you are still not doing things properly, and I’m worried. Before I left for California I received a phone call from a repair shop owner who does not sell gas and is faced with a DOL payroll audit looking for overtime violations. DOL is out there and they are going to continue to keep coming after you until they feel that the industry’s ‘culture’ has been sufficiently changed. I thought I was going to be able to call for this meeting earlier this year because I anticipated the proposal for the future emission inspection program to be out in January, but 5 months later and I’m still waiting on it. I’m watching the issue very closely and will provide you with details as I get them, hopefully soon.
Speaking of inspections, I could use your help. I am trying to gather some info on stale inspection stickers and I would appreciate an email to email@example.com letting me know how many stale inspection stickers you have in your inventory at this moment, how many stale ones did you have at the end of last year, and if possible how many you had at the end of the previous year. I am trying to find a way to minimize the number of stale stickers that you’re stuck with at the end of every year.
I want to give you another reminder of the natural gas workshop NJGCA is helping to host on July 12th. You can get more information and register for the event by CLICKING HERE. I continue to see it as the fastest and easiest of the emerging alternate fuels; it is something that can be very profitable for you, even though it may be a bit capital intense. If you need more proof this is the future then look at what Kwik Trip, a major Midwestern gas and c-store chain, is doing. They recently unveiled new alternate fuel stations which will sell CNG, LNG, E85, biodiesel, and propane. They also have begun transferring their fleet to CNG.
A month before the natural gas workshop there will be another conference on June 12th, this one a stakeholder conference sponsored by our friends the New Jersey Clean Cities Coalition which will include panel discussions on all alternate fueled vehicles. It will include as one of the speakers the President of the Board of Public Utilities Bob Hanna who will discuss alternative transportation fuels in NJ. You can register your attendance by CLICKING HERE.
This week the members of the state Legislature came back to Trenton for the first time in two months. Frankly, I’m not sure if I should be happy they’re actually showing up to do the job they were elected for, or if I should be afraid of what they may screw up next! It also means that our weekly features the Policy Patrol and Manure Pile are back. For the Policy Patrol I wanted to bring your attention to AR-73 from Assemblyman Matt Milam (D-Cumberland) and Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen). This resolution calls on Congress to allow the state of New Jersey to contract out rest-stops on interstate highways to private companies to develop and run. This issue was discussed in our most recent edition of the On the Road magazine after a failed attempt by the US Senate to allow this. Overturning the 60 year old ban on commercializing rest-stops would be disastrous for the thousands of small businesses located near interstate exits who rely on business coming off the highway to stay alive. NJGCA strongly supports maintaining the federal ban on rest-stop commercialization.
As for the Manure Pile, there is a new bill, A-2841 that would designate corn as the New Jersey State Grain. Do we really need a State Grain? Does anyone even know what that means?! This bill seems to follow the proud tradition of other staples of the Manure Pile, such as A-557 that would designate walking as the ‘state exercise’ or A-2292 that makes the Pine Barrens tree frog the ‘state amphibian’. I don’t like walking or frogs!
Thanks for listening – See you next week.
NEWS AROUND THE STATE
Report: Obama to press G8 nations to back oil release
President Obama will press Group of Eight leaders this weekend to support a coordinated release of emergency oil supplies, according to a news report. Obama will discuss the potential oil release during a G8 summit at Camp David on Friday and Saturday, Kyodo News, a Japanese news outlet, reported. But oil prices fell to a six-month low this week, and gasoline prices have been dropping as well.
North Dakota becomes nation’s second-leading oil producer, surpassing Alaska but still trailing Texas
The state’s oil patch is drilling at record levels and shows little sign of slowing down. The 152.9 million barrels of crude oil produced in 2011 set a record, surpassing the previous year’s mark by nearly 40 million barrels, according to the state Industrial Commission. “No. 2, who would have thought?” said Ron Ness, president of the North Dakota Petroleum Council, which represents several hundred companies working in the state’s oil patch. “In 1999, we had zero rigs working and people left this industry for dead in North Dakota. Technology, geology, price and the business climate changed that.”
Kwik Trip Natural Gas Debuts
With natural-gas prices at a 10-year low, the timing for retailers who wish to offer compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquid natural gas (LNG) as transportation fuels seems perfect. And Kwik Trip Inc., La Crosse, Wis., intends to take the stage in a big way.
NJGCA in the News: New Jersey gas tax unchanged as transportation costs rise
New Jersey’s gasoline tax was designed to fund roads and bridges but, with it unchanged after more than 20 years, it now cannot fully cover interest payments on past loans to fix them. Sal Risalvato, executive director of the Springfield-based New Jersey Gasoline-Convenience-Automotive Association, an advocate for gas stations, said raising the gasoline taxes would be a mistake that would end up hurting New Jersey revenue. Raising the tax would risk New Jersey gas stations losing those Pennsylvania and New York-based customers and making the state less attractive to businesses, he said. “It’s the only thing that New Jersey beats everyone else in — in terms of taxes,” Risalvato said.
-ALL CLASSES WILL BE HELD AT NJGCA HEADQUARTERS-
66 Morris Avenue - Springfield, NJ 07081 (Union County)
PLEASE NOTE: FUTURE DATES WILL BE ADDED UPON REQUEST AND ACCORDING TO DEMAND. CONTACT DEBBIE at 973-376-0066 or DEBBIE@NJGCA.ORG TO LET HER KNOW YOU ARE INTERESTED IN TAKING A SPECIFIC CLASS. THIS WILL ALLOW US TO GAUGE YOUR NEEDS AND KEEP TRACK OF THOSE WISHING TO PARTICIPATE!!
MEMBER BENEFIT PARTNER MESSAGE
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 require12 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 Phil Apruzzi 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 Phil Apruzzi at 973-376-0066 or email Phil at firstname.lastname@example.org. Mention that you are interested in saving money on your energy bills. NJGCA & TMP Energy Solutions will handle all the rest.
POLITICAL PARTICIPATON: THE NJGCA PAC
DEFENDING OUR MEMBERS.
PROTECTING YOUR INTERESTS.
ANSWER THE CALL & CONTRIBUTE TODAY!!
Promoting our agenda in Trenton is of utmost importance to NJGCA and our members.
To truly understand the importance of supporting our allies, consider our successes in Trenton:
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.
We defeated BELOW COST SELLING
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.
PLEASE SEND YOUR CONTRIBUTIONS TO:
66 Morris Avenue
Springfield, NJ 07081
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. ?
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