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August 6, 2020
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 Inside this issue
  Executive Directors Message  
I hope everyone is doing OK following the storms and power outages many across the state experienced this week. We haven't had a lot of calls regarding power outages from members, I know that there may be some locations that are still closed. If any of you are still experiencing power outages and having difficulties finding out when to expect to get the power back on, please contact Nick at nick@njgca.org.
Congress is considering new relief packages that you have probably heard of in the news, including an additional PPP package. One of the things that is being hotly contested is the additional $600 per week of unemployment benefits. I have heard from many of you anecdotally believing that you can't get employees back to work because they are making more money by staying home and collecting unemployment. However, I can't use anecdotal stories and hearsay when speaking with legislators. If any of you have specific circumstances where you have offered someone a job and they have refused, I need to know about it immediately. I don't need names, but I do need the exact situation described to me in writing. If this is truly a factor getting people back to work, then NJGCA must be a part of changing that. I can only do this though, through accurate information from you. Parties are trying to negotiate a deal, though it's also possible that there won't be one at all. Everything seems to be stalemated at the moment, but I need to be prepared.
It appears that the liability issue that protects business from claims resulting from customers contracting the COVID-19 virus seemed to be moving in the right direction. Last week, we met with Congressman Gottheimer who has expressed support for that legislation, though he also seemed to fully understand the implications mentioned above regarding the additional $600 per week. He's concerned that the additional money could be an incentive for people to not work, however, he would not commit to supporting our side of the issue. Oftentimes, right and wrong is blurred by voting with one's party. If there are any votes on this issue we will be sure to report to you how he voted.
Sal Risalvato, Eric Blomgren, and NJGCA members Robert Cattani & Levent Sertbas joined NACS and QuickCheck to talk about liability
With still no action from the governor on workplace liability, NJGCA recently sent a letter to Governor Murphy urging him to reconsider this legislation that presumes any essential employee that contracted the virus did so at the workplace. As press releases from this week by the New Jersey Civil Justice Institute and NJGCA point out, Governor Murphy and others have repeatedly tied the increase in new cases to large parties and out-of-state travel. NJGCA's position simply asks the governor to consider the dates he began to relax stay-at-home restrictions, and to not put the presumption of guilt on businesses if it is possible employees could have attended these gatherings. As our colleague Alida Kass points out in her press release, "knowing that the virus is most commonly transmitted through close-up, person-to-person interactions for extended periods has allowed business to adopt tactics to minimize that risk. Plexiglass barriers are up, and mask-wearing protocols are now universal for both employees and customers." Our industries have taken every precaution to keep customers and employees safe and should not shoulder the burden of employees taking risks after work hours. If you have not done so yet, please
We have sent out a number of action alerts asking you to contact the governor regarding the workers comp legislation that is sitting on his desk since last Thursday. Some of you haven't received our multiple notifications because you responded to our request immediately and the system only sends reminders to those that have not yet responded. Although NJGCA members have had an awesome response that I am extremely proud of, it will be helpful if those of you that have not responded will do so immediately. Click HERE to respond. Each of the coalitions involved in these efforts is asking their memberships to do this, and right now I am very proud of our members.
It has been reported this week that Speedway, previously owned by Marathon has now been sold to 7-Eleven. We do not know the implications of this yet as all speedway locations are company operated.
As of Monday, you can purchase stickers in person no matter what year in Trenton and all the specialty locations. As a reminder, the State's three specialty inspection sites are located at:
410 South Ave
Westfield, NJ 07090
Asbury Park
1010 Comstock St
Asbury Park, NJ 07712
550 Spring Garden Rd
Ancora, NJ 08037
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  

More Generators Mean Long Lines At Gas Stations During Tropical Storm Isaias Outages
If you're seeing long lines at gas stations - don't panic. The reason, in large part, is because people are filling up containers to power their generators, said Sal Risalvato, executive director of the New Jersey Gasoline Convenience Automotive Association. "The lines are being caused because there's people that are lining up to fill up their 5-gallon cans for their generators, and that takes a lot of time. It's not just like stick it in the car," he said. "There are more people today with generators than ever before." . . . Some lines of cars at gas stations, according to reports, have extended half a mile, which Risalvato said is because it takes much longer to fill gasoline storage cans than cars. While reports from motorists have surfaced about seeing local gas stations without the lights on, Risalvato said he has not heard about an "overwhelming" number of those, adding that the ones that are out of power seem to be in the southern end of the state.

Video Shows Car Slam Into Gas Station Pumps In Fiery Wreck On N.J. Highway
A car crashed into another vehicle before slamming into two gas pumps in a fiery wreck Tuesday morning that was captured on video along Route 1 in North Brunswick. Township police released a clip of the crash, which involved two vehicles near Driscoll Road. The video showed a red vehicle sideswiping the other car before it veered into the station and struck the gas pumps. Fires sparked at both of the pumps.

NJGCA: Should Small Employers Be Blamed For Essential Employees With Covid-19?
Sal Risalvato, Executive Director of the New Jersey Gasoline, Convenience, Automotive Association (NJGCA), released the following statement in response to legislation that was sent to the governor's desk: On Thursday, the Legislature passed S-2380, a bill which presumes that if an employee at an essential business gets sick with COVID-19, they are assumed to have been infected at work and therefore are eligible for workers compensation payments. The biggest problem with this bill is the open ended timeframe for essential employees to claim their infection was a result of going to work. Governor Murphy is likely to keep the current public health emergency in effect (at least officially) for months if not years to come. Therefore, a specific timeframe for this presumption should be in effect.  The Small Business community has proposed a very reasonable period when the official "stay at home" order was in effect, plus the two weeks afterward in order to include anyone who was infected on that final day but did not show symptoms.

Japan's Seven & I Seals $21 Billion Deal For Marathon Petroleum's Speedway Gas Stations
 The Japanese owner of 7-Eleven convenience stores has agreed to buy Marathon Petroleum Corp's (MPC.N) Speedway gas stations for $21 billion, brushing aside coronavirus concerns to return to the table five months after initially baulking at the deal. The acquisition is one of the biggest this year, suggesting the pandemic, while forcing many companies to focus on protecting balance sheets instead of expansion, has not killed off global dealmaking altogether.

White House Willing To Cut A Stimulus Deal Without 'liability Shield,' Breaking With McConnell
The White House is willing to cut a deal with Democrats that leaves out Senate Republican legislation aimed at protecting employers, hospitals and schools from coronavirus-related lawsuits, according to two people with knowledge of internal White House planning. The White House wants and is pushing for the "liability shield" as a top priority but would be willing to sign off on a deal that lacks the legal protections, those people said. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) controls the Senate floor and could shoot down any deal that leaves out what he has said is a necessary component of any stimulus package. One of the people familiar with the administration's thinking said the measure was "considered important but not absolutely essential." The dealmaking flexibility conflicts with the ultimatum McConnell has given Democrats that any congressional stimulus package must make it significantly harder for workers and customers to sue employers and businesses for damages related to the coronavirus.

NJ To Get Paid For Losses As Coronavirus, Small Jackpots Hurt Lottery Sales
After a massive drop in revenues during the COVID-19 pandemic, New Jersey has one, albeit small, financial bright spot ahead: Rather than spending at least $13 million to pay a bonus to the private company running the lottery, that company will pay a multimillion-dollar penalty to the state for failing to meet its sales targets.  Sluggish ticket sales due to the coronavirus and smaller jackpots in the Mega Millions and Powerball games led to a down fiscal year 2020, James Carey, executive director of the Lottery Commission, said Thursday. Sales through the end of June were $3.2 billion, a nearly 8% drop compared to $3.49 billion in 2019, he said. The lower sales means Northstar New Jersey, a gaming conglomerate that runs the sales and marketing of the lottery, hasn't been able to deliver money it had promised to the state. Under its 15-year contract, Northstar agreed to send $1.08 billion back, a percentage of overall sales that goes toward the public employee pension fund. But it had contributed just $937 million through June, Carey said.

We Went To The MVC To Get A Permit. It Took 7 Hours. You Decide Whether That Makes Sense
We're not here to rip the Motor Vehicle Commission. As regular readers may recall, we were understanding when the agency reopened its locations July 7 to crowds apparently far larger than state officials expected. Of course there are lines - there always are lines - we wrote at the time. How Gov. Phil Murphy and his team handled the situation moving forward would determine their competence, we said. My son and I headed to our local location (in Randolph) a little more than three weeks later - seemingly enough time to get things in order and hopefully allow for the initial surge to die down. My son, 17, needs to get his driver's permit. Here's how our day went. You decide whether the MVC - which Murphy praised earlier this week - has things running as well as they could be in the middle of a pandemic. . .



  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  

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Please call Chris at 609.577.2504 for more information.

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