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July 11, 2019
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 Inside this issue
  Executive Directors Message  

Another Minimum Wage Update
What's Going On With CBD Products
Tax on Vaping Fluids
Self-Serve Meetings
Young Professionals
Membership Drive

Hello everyone! Sal is out this week, so Eric and I are bringing you a short and sweet weekly update! 
At the beginning of the month, New Jersey raised the minimum wage to $10 per hour; the first step of ultimately raising the state's minimum wage to $15 per hour. Recently, Senator Declan O'Scanlon commented on how harmful this decision will be for small business, especially our industry. As another reminder, you must inform your payroll company to raise wages to be sure you are in compliance with the new minimum wage laws. 

I'm sure those of you with c-stores are aware of the growing popularity of CBD products. Decades ago, hemp was made illegal by the federal government because it is biologically similar to marijuana, but with the very important distinction that it has no THC, the chemical that actually makes someone intoxicated. As part of the 2018 Farm Bill, Congress and the President finally legalized hemp and products made from hemp. Users of CBD products have claimed that they have positive effects in helping with conditions ranging from anxiety to nausea to arthritis, not just for humans but also for pets. The FDA has been slow to respond, leading to confusion throughout the marketplace over these products. In theory, the FDA needs to give approval in order for at least some of these products to be sold, and it has been slow to do so. Many retailers are selling them anyway, and rarely has any authority taken action against them. The FDA only regulates non-food items (like lotions) if they make a claim for some therapeutic benefit, so if a CBD product does not explicitly claim it will help with an ailment, it can be legally sold. The FDA has claimed that CBD cannot be added to food without express regulatory action, which so far it has not done. There is hope that the growing pressure from both the marketplace and from Congress will force the FDA to act soon to allow the sale of food products with CBD. New Jersey's Legislature is not planning to wait. In June it unanimously passed A-5322, sponsored by Asm. Burzichelli (D-Gloucester). It explicitly legalizes the sale and use of cosmetics, personal care products, and food products with CBD. That legalization goes into effect when the bill is signed into law by Governor Murphy. 
A few weeks ago, both houses of the Legislature passed, and Governor Murphy signed a bill which changes the structure of the tax on vaping fluid, but only for certain types of products. The primary change for convenience stores is that as of November 1st only dedicated and licensed vape stores will be able to sell bottled vape fluid. Vape fluid sold in cartridges, like Juul, Vuse, Logic, and similar products can continue to be sold with no change in policy or tax structure. The large bottles, typically sold by the ounce or larger, will instead be taxed at a rate of 10% of the retail sale prices, with the tax collected and remitted by the vape shops. Original versions of this legislation would have required all vape products be taxed at the retail point of sale, meaning retailers would have to collect and  remit this tax in addition to the sales tax to the State, adding a compliance burden for c-stores. This compromise legislation ensures that the type of vaping products that make up the overwhelming majority of sales in the vape category will have their taxes continue to be paid at the wholesale level. 
For those interested in self-serve legalization, we are in the process of scheduling more meetings with legislators for the coming weeks, so pay attention to your inbox for details.
NJGCA's Young Professionals will be meeting again TODAY from 6 to 8 PM at the Asbury Park Biergarten. This is an excellent opportunity to network with other people with similar interests and for members to learn what new ideas, technologies, and opportunities are coming down the line which could potentially further businesses and the industry. There's still time to join! Visit our registration page to sign up! 
You all should have read in our April 2019 OTR and received emails about our membership drive. Please consider colleagues and competitors that you have a relationship with, and ask them to consider joining our cause here at NJGCA. After you speak to them, give us a call and let us know that you have spoken to them, and we will take it from there. The member with the most referrals that result in membership will win a $250 Visa gift card!

That's all for this week, back to your regularly scheduled programming next week!
Michelle Horowitz
Communications and Research Director




  Training Class Schedule  

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

Two-Day Emissions Inspector Training Class
July 24th & 25th

August 21st & 22nd
October 23rd & 24th

Want your technicians to become a NJ Emissions Inspector? We can help! Our new two-day class will provide all the information for becoming a NJ Emissions Inspector. Day one will consist of written test training and the State will administer the written test the very same day at our offices. Day two will be a hands-on training course to prepare you for the hands-on test. Class will run from 7:00am to 4:00pm on day 1. Class will begin at 12:30 PM on day 2. Cost is $479 for members. 

July class registration click here
August class registration click here
October class registration click here




  News Around The State  

CBO Report: $15 Minimum Wage Would Cost 1.3 Million Jobs
Raising the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour would boost wages for some 17 million people but cost the United States 1.3 million jobs, the Congressional Budget Office said Monday. According to UPI, the CBO analysis said that in addition to boosting wages for millions of minimum wage earners, an additional 10 million who are "otherwise earning slightly" more than $15 per hour also could get a pay raise. As a result, approximately 1.3 million Americans would rise above the poverty level, but at the cost of 1.3 million U.S. jobs.

Despite Gas Tax Increase, Poll Finds Roads Aren't Any Better For NJ Drivers
In spite of a doubling of the gas tax in 2016, another increase in October and yet another one looming, few motorists said that they felt the money has actually made New Jersey's roads better, according to a poll released July 10 from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Roughly a third of the 802 New Jersey adults polled between May 29 and June 4 felt that roads were actually getting worse, while another third said their cars were recently damaged by potholes.

What Impacts Retail Gas Prices?
The National Association of Convenience Stores recently worked with The Wall Street Journal to produce a five-minute online video that concisely explains why gas prices may vary around the country-and even from one corner to the next. "Anyone who has a friend or relative who is always complaining that there's a conspiracy regarding gas prices, should share this video with them," said Jeff Lenard, vice president of Strategic Industry Initiatives, NACS.

2 Big NJ Laws Take Effect Monday
Two historic New Jersey laws take effect on Monday. And they could have a big impact on your job. New Jersey's minimum wage is now $10 an hour, rising from $8.85. The wage will eventually rise to $15 an hour, but the first significant increase was scheduled for July 1. And very important provisions of the Family Leave Act that was signed into law by Gov. Phil Murphy also take effect on Monday. . .The amount of job loss that we are going to see among small businesses will be "tragic," O'Scanlon said. "New Jersey is basically famous for not wanting to pump our own gas. In fact, I've previously received phone calls making sure to let me know that 'Jersey Girls Don't Pump Gas'! Well, we better be prepared to start pumping our own gas soon because one of the industries that is bracing for massive losses is our fuel merchants," he said. "Local gas station owners testified before us that they cannot sustain employees and keep their businesses open without bringing in self-serve gas."


  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.


  Member Benefit Partner Message Board  



  Classifieds: For Sale and Help Wanted Ads  



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.

New! Parts For Sale: Incon TS-1000 tank monitor works well just taken out of service. Printer is aprox 2 months old. Also, Incon 8, tank probes. System replaced because on an Exxon upgrade. Call John Twin Towers Exxon (201) 224-8444