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September 8, 2022
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 Inside this issue
A Message From Your Association
  A Message From Your Association  
  A Message From Your Association  

Are Your Workplace Posters Up To Date? 

New NJGCA MBP: Welcome Icon!

Direct Deposit Scam to Be Aware Of

Update on Fight to Legalize Self-Serve

New Health Insurance Program for NJGCA Members Only

Bergen County Grant Program For Small Businesses: Apply Today!

Federal Oil Leases Slow Under Biden Administration

NJGCA Office Move

Update Employer Posters

Welcome back from Labor Day weekend! We hope you had a relaxing long weekend. 

First, for those of you with convenience stores, you should have stopped charging sales tax during the sales tax holiday on certain "Back to School" items we listed in a previous email. We wanted to remind you that this "tax holiday" ended on Monday, so make sure that you go back to charging sales tax on those special items again. 

With most returning back to school/work this week, we thought it would be a good time to remind you about keeping your mandated workplace posters up to date. This year, the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination ("LAD") and the New Jersey Family Leave Act ("FLA") were updated, meaning updated posters will need to be provided at each place of business. You can find these updated posters by clicking HEREand all other posters required by law on the NJGCA website.

Related, you can read this article published by our friends at the Service Station Dealers of America on wage and hour regulations and common misconceptions in making correct calculations. 

New NJGCA Member Benefit Partner: Icon!

Icon Payments

ICON Payments LLC is a software company whose mission is to build a merchant-inspired payment platform with revolutionary technology at a reasonable cost. Currently, our main goal is to bring EMV-Compliance to gas stations without having to go through the hassle of replacing the entire pump set-up. 

As of April 2021, gas stations have been required to have EMV-Compliant card readers or they risk being liable for EMV-related chargebacks. Some gas station owners are choosing to replace their pumps, which could cost upwards of $11,000 per pump. With ICON Payments' solution, you would only need to upgrade the card reader at a fraction of the cost of replacing an entire pump. 

Getting a quote for your site is simple and easy. Get in touch with one of our dedicated staff members and together we can figure out how to bring EMV-Compliance to your stations! 

ICON Payments LLC 

Payment Processing | EMV-Compliance | Merchant Services 




Direct Deposit Scam

We are keeping our eyes open for scams that could potentially affect your businesses, and unfortunately we have spotted another that you may need to warn your employees of. Actors are impersonating employees who work within a business or organization and emailing the payroll or HR department stating they need to update their direct deposit information. First, the perpetrator gains information on the employee through social media, such as LinkedIn, or through businesses websites. They then email HR/Payroll departments requesting their information be changed, and direct deposit information is then changed to that of the perpetrator. Businesses can prevent this from happening by making sure to call employees on the number you have on record for them to verify any requested changes to their direct deposit.

Update On Self-Serve

We wanted to briefly update you all on our fight to legalize a choice at the pumps in New Jersey. We continue to work with legislators and we think we have made good progress with leadership based on conversations we have had over the last few weeks. We may need to make some small adjustments to the bill, but we believe these changes will not unduly hurt small stations and will ultimately affect the end goal of the bill - to allow motorists to save at the pumps by legalizing self-serve. We are hopeful this is something that can pass in the next six months. 

New Health Insurance Program

Be on the lookout for an announcement on a new NJGCA health insurance program. We know a lot of members are concerned about cost of healthcare, with costs going up because of all the downstream effects of COVID-19. We have been working for several weeks on a new special offering for NJGCA members only, and are hoping to have more information to provide to members by the end of the month. If you think this is something you would be interested in, please email nick@njgca.org

Bergen County Grant Program

For those of you with a small business in Bergen County, another round of grant money is up for grabs to fund eligible businesses for costs and expenses associated with the COVID-19 pandemic resulting from business closure, partial closure or business interruption. To clarify, they define small business as those employing five or fewer employees. If you fit this description, free money is being left on the table! Applications opened up yesterday at 8 AM, submit your application today to be considered HERE.

Federal Oil Leases Slow

According to a Wall Street Journal analysis published this week, the Biden administration has leased fewer acres for oil-and-gas drilling both offshore and on federal land than any other administration dating back to the end of World War II. The leasing program, which had already been in a decline as oil-and-gas companies shy away from offshore drilling and federal lands amid the boom in fracking shale, had long been an asset for presidents looking to raise national energy production. Under President Biden, leasing is down 97% from the first 19 months of Donald Trump's term. Of the roughly 35 million acres now leased from the federal government, about 60% isn't actively producing. President Biden has made many promises to enact policy that seeks to limit climate change, and this action appears to be helping aid that promise. While many analysts say this is not behind the supply issues that sent gas prices soaring in the last few months, new leases would be helpful in increasing supply in the future and therefore limiting future shortages and price surges.

Reminder: NJGCA Office Move

Finally, we want to remind you all that NJGCA headquarters has relocated to 615 Hope Road, Bldg. 2, 1st Floor, Eatontown, 07724. Please update your records if you have not yet done so!

Be Well-

Your Association Staff



  Training Class Schedule  

All classes held at NJGCA HQ -- 615 Hope Road, Building 2, 1st Floor, Eatontown, NJ 07724

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  


Why Do Some People in New Jersey Suddenly Have Bags and Bags of Bags?

The mountains of bags are an unintended consequence of New Jersey's strict new bag ban in supermarkets. It went into effect in May and prohibits not only plastic bags but paper bags as well. The well-intentioned law seeks to cut down on waste and single-use plastics, but for many people who rely on grocery delivery and curbside pickup services their orders now come in heavy-duty reusable shopping bags - lots and lots of them, week after week. While nearly a dozen states nationwide have implemented restrictions on single-use plastic bags, New Jersey is the only one to ban paper bags because of their environmental impact. The law also bans polystyrene foam food containers and cups, and restricts restaurants from handing out plastic straws unless they're requested.


OPEC+ Cuts Oil Output by 100,000 Barrels a Day

OPEC+ agreed to cut oil production by 100,000 barrels per day, representing 0.1% of global demand, in October, reports CNBC. The cut was a surprise to energy markets, as experts widely believed the group would continue its production policy. Last month, OPEC+ raised production by 100,000 barrels per day, and the group said in a statement that its decision to revert back to August levels of production was because the lift in production was "intended only for the month of September." The cut in production seems to show that OPEC wants to keep an oil price level at $100 per barrel, reports the New York Times.


Juul Ordered to Pay $438.5 Million to 34 States and Territories

Connecticut Attorney General William Tong has ordered Juul Labs to pay $438.5 million to 33 states and Puerto Rico following a two-year probe into the company's marketing and sales tactics, reports the Wall Street Journal. The investigation found that Juul deliberately marketed its products to underage youth. Under the settlement, Juul can no longer show people under 35 in its marketing materials, product placements in film and television and on social media. It also cannot sell Juul-branded merchandise or fund education programs in schools.


Across New Jersey, Natural Gas Rates To Rise by Double Digits, Just In Time for Winter

New Jersey utility regulators on Wednesday approved double-digit rate increases for natural gas customers across the state. The increases, approved by the Board of Public Utilities, range from about 16 percent to more than 24 percent, and could cost the typical customer that uses gas to heat their home a few hundred dollars over the next year. They take effect Oct. 1. BPU commissioners blamed geopolitical forces for the rate hike, but there are a variety of other causes. As POLITICO reported earlier this week, U.S. natural gas prices have more than doubled in the past year, driven by factors such as climate change, a dip in output during the pandemic, tight spending by industry, Russia's war in Ukraine and a surge in U.S. exports to energy-starved Europe.



  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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