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March 30, 2023
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 Inside this issue
A Message From Your Association
  A Message From Your Association  
  A Message From Your Association  

Bill to Ban Plastic Forks Introduced in Assembly 

Flavored Vape Letter Update 

Another Minimum Wage Increase?

INL Classes: Email Us Today 

April is National Car Care Month! 

Flavored Vape Letter Update 

Last week we mentioned some letters were being sent from attorneys representing Reynolds Tobacco to convenience store owners who were selling vapes with flavors other than tobacco, which is illegal under New Jersey law. Since we mentioned this issue last, we have followed up with representatives from Reynolds, who let us know that they have invested a significant amount of resources for this widespread, long-term effort. They have hired both people to investigate the convenience stores in question and a large, credible law firm. They are only sending letters if they already have evidence collected that a store is selling products that are illegal under NJ law. Thankfully, their goal is merely to get stores into compliance, not to generate revenue, so if a store gets a letter and quickly comes into compliance and stops selling these flavors, then they will not take any legal action against them.  

It’s worth noting that some of these flavored products sold by “trunk slammers” are extremely low quality and may be unsafe to consumers, opening up a store to liability from the customer. Some studies even mention some of these Chinese disposables were discovered to have fentanyl in them. We always urge our members to never do business with trunk slammers and always patronize a reputable distributor. If you need a suggestion, our Member Benefit Partner National Convenience Distributors is always a great start.  

Plastic Utensils 

Here we go again with another potential ban on convenience for New Jersey businesses. A new bill introduced last week in the General Assembly would eliminate the ability of New Jersey businesses to hand out single-use plastic utensils or packets of condiments unless customers specifically ask an employee for them. The proposal also applies to take out orders through drive-thru or delivery. The only exemption noted is for eco-friendly utensils and condiments. This, of course, comes less than a year after the enactment of the plastic bag ban, which also banned most stores from using paper bags and completely eliminated Styrofoam-like products. It also comes more than a year after a similar ban on single-use straws, also requiring customers to ask for them. It’s one thing if stores can just leave out a bin and customers can take what they need, but this bill seems to say employees must keep them behind the counter and only give out utensils when asked. It would also prevent stores from giving out more utensils than needed, so you wouldn’t be legally allowed to offer the little packets with a fork, knife, and spoon. The penalty for any violation is $1,000 for a first offense. This bill was only just introduced in the Assembly, but we plan to follow this and keep you updated on any action taken. 

Another Minimum Wage Increase? 

In January, the New Jersey minimum wage for most employers increased not to $14, but to $14.13. The larger than expected increase was because New Jersey’s law requires annual increases based on inflation, and last year we saw the largest inflation in decades. Now, some of the same leftist groups who pushed for the $15 minimum wage law are saying that $15 is not enough. In New York there’s already a fight between the Democratic Governor who just wants to increase the wage based on inflation, and some legislators and activists who want to increase it all the way to $21.25 an hour in less than three years. Given that the $15 minimum wage bill continues to be one of Governor Murphy and Assembly Speaker Coughlin’s proudest achievements, we can’t rule out another fight on this issue in the next few years.  

INL Classes 

We continue holding INL classes (to become a motor vehicle emissions inspector) with our latest one happened this week on Tuesday and Wednesday. We rarely post about the classes in the main message because our classes are usually booked in advance, as evidenced by the fact that this most recent one was actually overbooked! Our classes have a fantastic pass rate and promise to have your employees on the road to receiving their license in no time.  

We hope to hold more classes in the coming months with a goal of scheduling one a month. If you know of an employee or colleague in need on INL certification, contact Nick at training@njgca.org so you can be the first to hear about an opportunity.  

National Car Care Month 

April is National Car Care Month! For those of you with repair shops, now is the time to bring attention to the importance of regular preventative car maintenance and care. If you have any social media, consider posting something on your various platforms celebrating the month of spotlight. Consider posting about the importance of checking and changing your tires, oil changes, brake changes and the importance of other routine visits. You can even highlight your valued technicians. Social media is a great way to reach more potential customers in a competitive business market.  

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  


Man Sentenced To 63 Years In Prison For Fatal Shooting At N.J. Gas Station, Officials Say 

A man convicted of fatally shooting a 45-year-old Woodlyne resident at a Camden gas station in 2020 was sentenced Thursday to 63 years in state prison, authorities said. 


E-Fuels Argued as Alternative to Electric Batteries 

The decision by the European Union to “end sales of CO2-emitting cars in 2035” has faced opposition from Germany, which argued that ICE vehicles should continue to be sold if they run on e-fuels–though much discussion still surrounds the viability of utilizing them in passenger car fleets, Reuters reports. E-fuels are created by way of “synthesizing captured CO2 emissions and hydrogen produced using renewable or CO2-free electricity,” similar to “e-kerosene, e-methane, or e-methanol.” These fuels still release CO2 when used by an engine, but are equal to the amount of CO2 taken to produce the fuel: making it “CO2-neutral overall. These e-fuels can be used in contemporary ICE vehicles and are able to be transported through “existing fossil fuel logistics networks.” Arguments in favor of e-fuels assert that they can help to cut CO2 emissions without having to replace entire vehicles with EVs. 


NJ Allowing Electronic Display Of Vehicle Registration 

There's now one less piece of paper to search for when a police officer pulls you over. Honoring a bill signed into law by Gov. Phil Murphy in November 2021, the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission announced on Monday that motorists are allowed to display an electronic form of their vehicle registration, and are no longer forced to hand over proof on paper. . . Effective March 24, an emailed PDF of their registration is going out to any customers who complete an online renewal or duplicate registration transaction with the Commission. It can be printed out, saved, or downloaded for display from a phone, tablet, or computer. 


U.S. New-vehicle Sales Expected To Grow In March, Though Momentum Is Slowing 

U.S. light-vehicle sales got off to a strong start in the first quarter, but the new-vehicle market showed signs of losing momentum by March as rising interest rates and transaction prices are putting pressure on what consumers can afford. 


EU Approves Law to End Sales of New CO2-Emitting Cars by 2035 

European Union countries' energy ministers gave final approval on Tuesday to a law ending sales of new CO2-emitting cars in the EU in 2035, after Germany won an exemption for cars running on e-fuels. The law will now enter into force. It will require all new cars sold to have zero CO2 emissions from 2035, and 55% lower CO2 emissions from 2030, versus 2021 levels. 



  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  

Dispensers & Kiosk For Sale: Dispensers (2) are Dresser Wayne and EMV compliant & updated.  


924 Stuyvesant Ave

Union, NJ 07083

P: (908) 688-4480


Fran Metta

C: (908) 416-4303

E: franmetta@cs.com