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July 16, 2020
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 Inside this issue
  Executive Directors Message  


In the past few weeks we have had extreme difficulty communicating with MVC to try to get updates to share with you. We do know that the Winslow and Asbury Park locations are completely closed and the Westfield office is open on a limited basis for drivers test backlogs. All other locations may be open and serving customers, though don't count on getting helped any time soon as it is clear that there are not enough personnel to answer phones and there may not be people to service you when you get there. Basically, MVC is still in total chaos. They do not have the capacity to handle the workload at this time. For those of you that need to obtain inspection stickers, your best option is still to mail in your request well in advance of when you need it since they are backlogged. Even to get the info we just gave you was extremely difficult. I do not see this getting better anytime soon. You can look for every department of the state to be in similar chaos at some point if they are not already. Look at the chaos in the unemployment system, with people still waiting for checks that filed back in February. You may want to anticipate future needs, some members are telling us stickers they already ordered can be stuck on a car tomorrow. Also as a result of the chaos in MVC, bids for a new state inspection program have been pushed back yet again to October 9th, 2020.
Additionally, you should have all received this advisory already, which extends expiration dates for registrations, vehicle inspections, temporary tags, and licenses and non-driver IDs. All documents expiring March 13th through May 31 are extended to September 30th, and all documents expiring June 1 through August 31st are extended to December 31st.
We participate in a coalition with other business organizations, and the general consensus all around is that businesses are struggling, even as the state continues to slowly open back up. We are concerned for everyone, but most important are our industries which people rely on every day. I want to remind you of this webinar we did several weeks ago on best practices for keeping your businesses safe as the state reopens. The webinar covers operating safely and minimizing any future liability that an employee or customer could complain. I especially encourage you to print and keep handy our guidance document that we prepared with the webinar as well.

A couple weeks ago we announced Monmouth, Ocean, Passaic, and Essex county grant programs for small businesses. Just yesterday Union county announced the same. The program will make available $2 million in CARES Act relief funds and will provide grants up to $20,000 to eligible small businesses. The grant will cover three month's rent, property mortgage, utility and insurance expenses. It will be available to small businesses located in Union County with 25 or fewer employees (prior to the pandemic). Businesses located in Union County can apply now at www.ucnj.org/covid-grant.
Despite already announcing, Monmouth County still has not put the application online and has not made it available. The grant money from Ocean, Passaic, and Essex counties is being automatically given to those who applied through the main EDA grant application a few weeks ago. If you applied for an EDA grant, you can now enter your application number at https://www.cognitoforms.com/NJEDA/grantapplicationstatus and they will give you your application status.
This week in the news, 15 states (including NJ) pledged to eradicate toxic diesel emissions by 2050. Part of New Jersey's efforts to reduce emissions is the announcement of a grant program for installing EV charging stations. We sent out a memo the other day for those of you who are interested in installing an EV charging station on your property and may want to apply for the grant program. We have included a link to the two-page grant application in the memo. If you are interested in the application, this is your reminder that the deadline is next Wednesday, July 22nd to apply. NJGCA has been working with Chargepoint on this issue. If you would like to discuss the prospect of installing an EV fast charger in the near future, reach out to Eric@njgca.org and he can connect you with someone from Chargepoint who will provide more information on how the installation and the economics of it could work.
Be Well -  
Sal Risalvato
Executive Director




  Training Class Schedule  

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

Two-Day Emissions Inspector Training Class
September 16th & 17th, 2020

After a long delay due to the ongoing COVID-19 public health crisis, NJGCA is pleased to announce that our training classes will resume! If you, a colleague, or an employee technician wishes to become a NJ Emissions Inspector, we can help and now is your chance! NJGCA will offer a two-day class with all the information and training you need to become a NJ Emissions Inspector.
On day one you will receive in-class instruction from NJGCA's instructor. We will break for lunch (provided), and the State will administer the written test in the afternoon. On day two will go over the hands-on test at an emission inspection location to fully prepare you for the hands-on test.
In light of the current crisis, and to protect both students and staffers, all participants must wear facemasks at all times while on the premises and respect social-distancing guidelines.

September class registration click here



  News Around The State  

New Jersey Business Coalition: Long-term Borrowing Should Not Be Leading Option for NJ
We are deeply concerned about New Jersey's ability to withstand the consequences of the proposed borrowing plan announced by Governor Murphy and currently moving through the Legislature. There is no doubt that New Jersey will require additional resources during this COVID-19 crisis. To address this, we need a comprehensive fiscal strategy that includes all tools at our disposal. Absent that, any plan for borrowing now is premature.

15 States and the District of Columbia Join Forces to Accelerate Bus and Truck Electrification
Today, 15 states and the District of Columbia announced a joint memorandum of understanding (MOU), committing to work collaboratively to advance and accelerate the market for electric medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, including large pickup trucks and vans, delivery trucks, box trucks, school and transit buses, and long-haul delivery trucks (big-rigs). The goal is to ensure that 100 percent of all new medium- and heavy-duty vehicle sales be zero emission vehicles by 2050 with an interim target of 30 percent zero-emission vehicle sales by 2030. States signing the MOU are: California, Connecticut, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington.

GSI Report: Gas Tax Fails To Deliver Infrastructure Improvements
As New Jersey reopens and residents return back to work, many more are on the roads utilizing their personal vehicles or public transportation to get to where they need to go. However, Garden State Initiative on Tuesday said many of the state's roads and bridges are in disrepair, and in turn, is asking leaders in Trenton what to expect from the Gas Tax and why residents should keep paying into it without better results? "An examination of publicly available meeting minutes and financial data shows that the Murphy Administration has failed to fully utilize our Gas Tax funds to deliver infrastructure improvements," Regina M. Egea, president of the Garden State Initiative, said. "Gov. (Phil) Murphy should immediately suspend the 27.3 cents per gallon in Gas Taxes collected from motorists, and rule-out any further tax increase this summer."

Union County Freeholders Announce Covid-19 Relief Grant Program For Small Businesses
The Union County Freeholder Board today announced the initial-round launch of the Union County Covid-19 Relief Grant Program for small businesses that have been impacted by the health emergency. The grant program will make available a total of $2 million in CARES Act relief funds. Out of this funding, the program will provide grants up to $20,000 to eligible small businesses to cover three month's rent, property mortgage, utility and insurance expenses. The grant will be available to small businesses located within the boundaries of Union County with 25 or less employees prior to the COVID emergency.

Bullish Analysts Predict $150 Oil by 2025
This year, oil markets dipped under $0 a barrel for the first time. Now some investors and analysts are forecasting a rebound to $150 per barrel, the Wall Street Journal reports. But others are less sanguine, pointing to the pandemic as suppressing fuel demand even after the coronavirus threat fades. "That funding pressure is going to be massive. It's going to be really difficult for some of the producers to produce," said Trevor Woods, chief investment officer of Northern Trace Capital. "We could hit $150 pretty easily by 2025." However, in the long run, most analysts predict prices will hit a level that will provide profit to energy producers from manufacturing enough crude to meet demand. COVID-19 has thrown a wrench in those calculations though, making investors unsure if transportation and consumption patterns will be permanently altered.

GOP Wants Licenses, Registrations Extended And Troopers Handling Traffic Until Mvc Mess Is Cleaned Up
Republicans legislators want the New Jersey State Police to handle traffic control at Motor Vehicle Commission agencies and asked Gov. Phil Murphy to extend expiring driver's licenses and other documents by several months to divert the massive crowds that have swamped agencies since they reopened Tuesday. In addition, Minority Leader Jon Bramnick, R-Union, a potential challenger to Murphy, said he wants MVC agencies to be open 12 hours a day, seven days a week. Now they are open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on weekdays, after Murphy ordered them to be open on Mondays. They're also open a half day on Saturdays. Earlier Wednesday, Murphy announced that agencies would not close on Mondays in July as originally planned and that MVC employees would not have to take mandatory furloughs - that other state workers have to take - so they can chip away at the backlog.

Attorney General, DEP Commissioner File Lawsuit Against Nation's Largest Auto Auction Company For Selling Tampered, Super-Polluting Vehicles
Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal, Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Catherine R. McCabe and Division of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Director Paul R. Rodriguez today announced multiple legal actions to protect the public from the sale of tampered vehicles that release excessive amounts of air pollution. To protect the environment and public health, automobile manufacturers are required to reduce pollution from vehicles by installing state of the art emissions control technology that meets air quality standards set by environmental regulators. Despite these clean air requirements, some unscrupulous auto dealers, auctioneers, repair shops and individuals tamper with vehicles by altering or removing the emission control systems or installing software that can disrupt their operation. This tampering violates the law, depletes air quality and threatens public health.



  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.


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