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November 4, 2021
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 Inside this issue
  Executive Directors Message  








Sal is at the SEMA/APPEX show with Joe Ocello, our Board President this week. He has already informed the staff that there is lots of great information that he has learned to share with the membership in next week's newsletter.



Well I hope you all voted because the one clear outcome of our elections this year is that every vote really does matter! The race for Governor will be one of the closest in New Jersey history. It appears that Phil Murphy is likely to win but by a tiny margin, currently he is ahead by about 1%. It may be another two weeks before the final count is certified, and that's when any legal challenges will likely begin, if it truly ends up that close. Polls showed Gov. Murphy would win by 8-10 points. If indeed he has won a second term, hopefully he will take this result as a rebuke and move his policies towards the center, and in a more pro-business and pro-affordability direction.

Republicans have made significant gains in the Legislature as well, moving them into a more influential position. There are several races still outstanding, right now it is looking like a net gain of one or two Senate seats which would be a 23-17 or 24-16 split, and a gain of six seats in the Assembly for a roughly 46-34 split, the closest the Legislature has been in about 20 years. The most shocking news of the night is the close race that Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-Gloucester) is in. Though it isn't quite official yet, he is about to lose race that no one expected would even be competitive. He has been the leader of the state Senate since 2010, if he does lose when all votes are counted then the Senate Democrats would need to find a new leader for their chamber, which will have a huge impact on the next two years and maybe the next decade of lawmaking in New Jersey. While Senator Sweeney has been a moderating force in general, he has also been hostile to any effort to legalize self-serve gas. Votes are still being counted all over and multiple legislators are going to win or lose by a small number of votes, the final counts may not be in for another two weeks and that's not counting the possibility of recounts. Like I said, I hope you voted, it does matter!



Did you see the message yesterday regarding ERC?

As you may be aware, the Employee Retention Credit (ERC) was first made available with the CARES Act back in March of 2020. However, I have realized that what actually made the headlines was the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), as that was the program most everyone embraced. The ERC was barely noticed. Yet, once one understands the simplicity of this program, and how substantial the tax credits can be, the ERC is really the diamond-in-the-rough. Heartland clients taking advantage of this program have seen an average of $85,000.00 in IRS Tax credits! The purpose of this discussion, therefore, will be to help our members understand the details and substantial benefits of the program.

Below I have summarized the details of what could represent sizable tax refunds to your company:

ERC: 2020 The refund for 2020 is max $5,000 per employee, (calculated as 50% of their first $10,000 in eligible wages.) and is applied toward your Fed Tax Liability. PPP wages used for 1st draw forgiveness are not eligible wages for the calculation of the refund, but the excess wages are. The IRS has indicated it will take 8-12 months to receive the refunds.

ERC: The refund for 2021 is 70% of $10,000 eligible wages per employee per quarter. Max credit $7,000 per employee per quarter ($28,000 annually per employee) and is applied toward your Fed Tax Liability. PPP wages for 2nd draw are ineligible for the ERC calculation, but the excess wages are.

To be eligible for the credit you need to meet only ONE of the following two:

  • Business operations were partially restricted or totally shut down due to the Coronavirus OR
  • Gross receipts are less than 80% when compared to the same quarter of 2019 (for 2021) OR
  • Gross receipts are less than 50% when compared to the same quarter of 2019 (for 2020)

There are two ways an employer can claim tax refunds for payrolls that have not yet been processed in 2021:

1. Claim the refund on the quarterly 941 tax return, if that return has not yet been filed...OR

2. Heartland will process your payrolls, and refund your tax credits within 7-10 days. The credit will then be reflected by us when we file the return. This will be much faster.

For more information, you can read the email that was sent yesterday, or contact Scott Seidman at 908-334-4778 or scott.seidman@e-hps.com.



Today, November 4th, is the start of the new law affecting plastic straws, as we have mentioned previously. Under the new law, single use plastic straws at restaurants and convenience stores can only be given out to a customer who requests one. Businesses are supposed to have some straws on hand in case a customer does want one. Easier is likely to be providing paper or bamboo straws and/or switching your drink lids to designs which do not need a straw. Selling reusable straws may be a good revenue opportunity. This change does not affect your ability to sell boxes of plastic straws or selling products that have a plastic straw attached to them, like juice boxes, you can continue to sell these products as normal. Thankfully, if a store is found by an authority to be violating the law it is required that they only be given a warning for a first offense. 



Our 2021 turkey drive is officially underway! I want to thank those of you who have already made very generous donations for those who are facing an empty table ahead of this holiday season. We are still in need of donations to beat our number from last year! If you have not done so yet, please consider visiting the Turkey Drive website and making a donation today. 



Today marks the Indian holiday of Diwali, the festival of lights, and a holiday that celebrates "the victory of light over darkness and good over evil." For all those who celebrate, I am wishing you a happy holiday. May the lights of Diwali surround you and your loved ones with happiness and positivity.


Be Well -  

Sal Risalvato
Executive Director




  Training Class Schedule  

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

Contact Nick De Palma at Nick@njgca.org to inquire about potential trainings and class dates



  News Around The State  



US Mandates Vaccines Or Tests For Big Companies By Jan. 4

Tens of millions of Americans who work at companies with 100 or more employees will need to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Jan. 4 or get tested for the virus weekly under government rules that took effect Thursday. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration said companies that fail to comply could face penalties of nearly $14,000 per violation. The new requirements, which were first previewed by President Joe Biden in September, will apply to about 84 million workers at medium and large businesses, although it is not clear how many of those employees are unvaccinated.



EPA to Tighten Rules on Oil and Gas Production to Reduce Methane

The U.S. plans to strengthen regulations on oil and natural-gas production to reduce methane emissions, President Biden announced at the Glasgow climate summit, where world leaders pledged to drastically reduce methane, reports the Wall Street Journal. Methane, a greenhouse gas, accounted for 10% of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States in 2019. It is caused by drilling, livestock and landfills, and it traps roughly 85 times more heat than carbon dioxide. . .The EPA would implement a "comprehensive monitoring program to require companies to find and fix leaks" across operations including wells, pipes and storage tanks. Oil well producers also could not vent off gas at oil wells under the proposed regulations. In 2030 alone, that would save $690 million worth of gas that might otherwise be wasted, the agency said.



White House Releases Build Back Better Agenda

President Joe Biden released the framework for his "Build Back Better (BBB)" agenda yesterday. The framework represents the broad-brush agreement between the White House and congressional Democrats on what will be included in their social spending bill and how they intend to pay for it. The legislation, often referred to as the "reconciliation package," will only need 50 votes in the Senate to pass. . .While there are certainly additional changes to come, the BBB framework released yesterday, along with the House legislative text itself, reflects some significant wins for the convenience and fuel retailing industry. Most notably, the House bill does not include any increase in the Federal Excise Tax on Tobacco (FET). Originally, the House's version included language to double the FET on cigarettes and apply tax parity to all other tobacco and nicotine products.



  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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