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January 13, 2022
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 Inside this issue
  Executive Directors Message  











Before we get into the news that went on this week, I want to ask that if you and/or your business is on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, to please take a minute to follow us on each of the platforms. We want to be more aggressive with sharing news, information, and opinions on our social media platforms, including our legislative efforts. Also, we hope to highlight our members' efforts in their communities and beyond on social media as well. We would appreciate the follow and welcome discussion and sharing!


In other NJGCA office news, we are now using a four digit account number for account access. This means that your website login will be changing. Here's how to find your new account number to log in: When you try to login to the website, enter your current information, though it will decline access. When it is declined, please use the "Forgot My Logon Information" link. This will send you an email with your new account number and password. If you run into any issues with this, please email Greg@njgca.org

Additionally, please be sure to watch your email for dues invoices. January renewals will be going out very soon.


Tuesday night was Governor Murphy's annual State of the State address. While normally this would take place live, this year's version was recorded due to the ongoing COVID crisis. There's not much that he said that is particularly notable to our industries this year, though he did promise that his new budget will not include any new tax increases. He also talked about driving down property taxes, though he did not mention any specific plans on how he would do this. He also declared a renewed Public Health Emergency in the state, but stated there would be no new restrictions. Rather, it would be a continuation of some of the previous restrictions and mandates that were enacted to combat the virus. The purpose of the renewal was that he needs authority to keep mask mandates in schools and to require hospitals to report COVID data to the state. 

Tuesday was also Inauguration day for the new Legislature. Twenty-one new legislators took office in the 120 member body, including a new Senate President Nicholas Scutari and new Republican leaders in both Houses, Senator Steve Oroho and Assemblyman John DeMaio.

Senator Teresa Ruiz is the new Senate Majority Leader. Also notably, three new Asian legislators joined, doubling the total from three to six following last year's election. The new legislators are Assemblywomen-elect Sadaf Jaffer (D-Somerset), Shama Haider (D-Bergen) and Ellen Park (D-37th). We look forward to working with all the members of the new legislature. 


The new legislative session is officially here, and we are busy organizing the sponsors of our proposed self-serve legislation. We are expecting the legislation to be introduced in the next few weeks. When it is finally introduced, I am going to need all hands on deck contacting legislators and possibly speaking with the media. Please reach out to me if you are interested in doing so, Sal@njgca.org.


Has anyone been paying attention to the price of crude oil in the last week? Crude oil is on the rise again. It had reached a high of $85 a barrel back in October and then slumped back down to about $65. It is now back up into the 80s and it just makes sense that you will see the wholesale price of gasoline start to rise as well. There's some funny things happening in the marketplace because the last few weeks inventories of gasoline actually rose nationwide while crude oil inventories have declined, which is the major cause in the rise of crude oil prices. It makes sense that if the raw material to make gasoline costs more then gasoline itself must also cost more. However, if people aren't buying it and inventories continue to rise, then that will cause downward pressure. Basically, I have no clue where we're going. There's no question that COVID has something to do with this, with the Omicron variant spreading and New Jersey not even hitting its peak yet. More people are back to working from home or sick and not working or leaving their houses at all, but will there be further implications from this? I will be watching and reporting back in future Road Warriors and I'm sure you all will be watching as well. 


Although there's nothing on the Treasury website that indicates that a contract has been awarded to one of the bidders, sources have told us that an award was made during the holidays when no one was paying attention. The reason there has been no announcement is because one or more of the losing bidders are once again protesting who the contract has been awarded to. Unlike in the previous administration when top officials at MVC openly communicated with me, the current administration will not share any info with me. Please be assured we are doing everything we can to get information and keep you updated.


Several weeks ago, we sent out a Wildfire Alert regarding skimmers being found throughout a number of locations in Monmouth County. We want to caution you to check your dispensers daily. It has been a while since I urged you to use a method to quickly see if your machines have been tampered with. There is a special security tape that can be placed on access hatches and doors to indicate if credit card skimming equipment has been inserted inside the gas dispenser. This tape can also be applied to the dispenser credit card reader or inside POS terminals to provide visual authentication that a 'skimmer overlay' is not present. There are several different types of this tape that can be used, some have serial numbers on them (to cut down on the possibility that someone will show up with the exact type of sticker and place over the one they've broken); while others have unique verbiage on them. If any equipment is tampered with, the sticker will show the verbiage or the serial number, indicating that a skimmer may have been installed. If you are not utilizing tape or some other mechanism to find skimmers you should be. If you inspect your pumps every day, then the most you will go is a 24 hour period with the skimmer undetected. This is an especially important precautionary measure if you have not upgraded your credit card readers to EMV at the pumps.

Here are some links to different types of security tapes:





Have any of you had any experiences with credit card skimmers that can be shared with us? Please contact sal@njgca.org


Be Well -  

Sal Risalvato
Executive Director



  Training Class Schedule  

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


ASE Training Course - Reach Out Today!

Are you (or an employee) getting ready to take your A6, A8, or L1 in preparation to recertifying your Emission Repair Technician (ERT) credentials through the State's Emission Technician Education Program (ETEP)?  

We can help --- but we need to hear from you, first! 
NJGCA wants to hear from students interested in our ASE-prep training program, so we can gauge demand and schedule our next session series. 

As you know, the NJ Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) has always maintained a "dual-track" system to allow technicians to earn their Emission Repair Technician (ERT) credentials through New Jersey's Emission Technician Education Program (ETEP). In doing so, technicians were allowed to certify as ERTs through either an ASE-test track or an ETEP-educational class track. Starting on January 1, 2020, NJDEP amended the ETEP criteria, and the ETEP-educational class track was abolished.  

Today, only the ASE-test track remains, and all ERTs must certify or re-certify their credentials though ASE to remain in the Program. 

NJGCA has recently offered an ASE-prep class to help you get ready for the A6, A8, and L1. In doing so, students were welcome to participate in a ten-session preparatory class that covered material for all three ASE exams. We also had a handful of students who joined us only for the A8 or L1 sections.  

Once completed, students took their ASE exams with a local ASE-approved test proctor (NJGCA can train you to prepare for the ASE exams, but are not permitted to offer the actual exam - students must make these arrangements individually themselves). 

Building on that success, we are now seeking student participation in our next training series session. To make arrangements and organize a session, we need to hear from you! 

If you are interested, please email us at training@njgca.org ASAP. 

We'll record your interest, inquire on your availability, and schedule a class once we have a full complement of students.   

Only with your feedback can we gauge student headcount and participation.  

Please reach out to us today, and thank you for your interest! 

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



  News Around The State  


Oil Rally to Continue In 2022 As Demand Outstrips Supply, Analysts Say

Oil prices that rallied 50% in 2021 will power further ahead this year, some analysts predict, saying a lack of production capacity and limited investment in the sector could lift crude to $90 or even above $100 a barrel. Though the Omicron coronavirus variant has pushed COVID-19 cases far above peaks hit last year, analysts say oil prices will be supported by the reluctance of many governments to restore the strict restrictions that hammered the global economy when the pandemic took hold in 2020. Brent crude futures traded near $85 on Wednesday, hitting two-month highs.


OPIS Analyst Says $4 Gas Possible This Spring

Americans should expect to see record high gas prices nearing $4 a gallon this year, according to Tom Kloza in a CNN opinion piece. Kloza is global head of energy analysis for the Oil Price Information Service (OPIS). "To be sure, the crude oil prices that provide much of the raw cost for gasoline trended higher for virtually all of 2021. In October, Brent crude, the global benchmark for oil, hit a high of $85.76 per barrel and the U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate reached $85.64 per barrel," wrote Kloza. . . Kloza says that many have blamed President Biden for the higher energy prices, and although he did stop the permits for the Keystone XL pipeline, which would have moved more Canadian oil from Alberta to Nebraska, existing pipeline expansion projects have and will move more Canadian crude to the U.S. However, Biden's regulations to decrease the U.S. carbon footprint could impact energy prices but not until the second half of 2022.


Consumer Prices Popped Again In December, Casting A Shadow Over The Economy.

Inflation climbed to its highest level in 40 years at the end of 2021, a troubling development for President Biden and economic policymakers as rapid price gains erode consumer confidence and cast a shadow of uncertainty over the economy's future. The Consumer Price Index rose 7 percent in the year through December, and 5.5 percent after stripping out volatile prices such as food and fuel. The last time the main inflation index eclipsed 7 percent was 1982. Policymakers have spent months waiting for inflation to fade, hoping supply chain problems might ease and allow companies to catch up with booming consumer demand. Instead, continued waves of the coronavirus have locked down factories, and shipping companies have struggled to work through extended backlogs as consumers continue to buy foreign goods at a rapid clip. Forecasters expect price gains to weaken this year, but how quickly that will happen is unclear, posing a big economic policy question for Mr. Biden and the Federal Reserve.


New Jersey Passes Ambitious Recycled Content Bill, Which Now Heads To Governor for Signature

New Jersey's recycled content bill, S2515, is on its way to Gov. Phil Murphy's desk after passing the state's Assembly and Senate Jan. 10. Starting in 2024, rigid plastic containers will need to contain at least 10% postconsumer recycled content, and plastic beverage containers will need to contain at least 15%. These rates will rise incrementally over the years and cap at 50% by 2036 and 2045, respectively, according to the bill.


U.S. Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments on Vaccine Mandate

The U.S. Supreme Court began hearing oral arguments on two separate legal challenges brought by NACS and multiple states regarding the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's vaccine-or-test rule for private employers. The nine justices varied in their opinions on the pandemic and the efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine, reports the Hill. Liberal judges say that the vaccine is the only way to curb the COVID-19 virus and end the pandemic, while conservative judges question whether the federal government has the authority to issue a sweeping vaccine mandate.


Hybrid Vehicles Hit Record Sales in 2021

Hybrid vehicles hit record sales numbers last year in the U.S., reports Reuters. Hybrid sales rose 76% to 801,550 vehicles last year, accounting for 5% of U.S. light vehicle sales. EV sales jumped 83% to 434,879 but represented only 3% of the market. "Hybrids offer a really intriguing mix of fuel economy performance without some of the huge drawbacks that electric vehicles present," Brett Smith, technology director at Center for Automotive Research, told Reuters. Toyota was the top-selling automaker in the U.S. last year, and it posted record hybrid, plug-in and fuel-cell vehicle sales, which were up 73% to 583,697. Honda was the second hybrid vehicle seller in the U.S., with its hybrid car sales up 67% compared with 2020 to a record 107,060 last year. Honda plans to release an EV in 2024, its first foray into the market.


Gas On Its Way To $4 Per Gallon - When Could It Happen In NJ?
In recent months, New Jersey gas prices have trended as high as 10 cents more per gallon than the national average, which is causing one analyst who predicts the United States could be paying $4 per gallon by Memorial Day to accelerate his forecast for the Garden State. Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy, said New Jersey is at "elevated risk" for hitting this holiday benchmark a little early.


Proposed Auto Insurance Bills Will Dramatically Raise Rates - Just Ask People in Florida

As local insurance agents who engage with members of the public seeking insurance coverage on a daily basis, we know all too well the negative impact that broad and poorly defined legal standards - such as those found in New Jersey Senate Bill 1559 and Assembly Bill 1659 - can have on the insurance market. The clearest example of this can be found in Florida, where the average driver pays 188% higher than the national average for uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, which is mandatory in New Jersey. Florida lawyers have weaponized the state's low legal standards to compel insurers to settle claims for artificially higher amounts in order to avoid the high costs of litigation. These increased costs have been passed onto consumers through higher insurance premiums. As a result of these high costs, 50% of all insured vehicles in Florida only carry the state required minimum injury and liability limits, and 25% of all vehicles are uninsured. This is untenable, as Florida has priced out low-income residents, such as those in the tourism and service sectors.



  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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