March 7, 2014 Visit us online at www.wpma.com
SENATE BILL INTRODUCED TO EXTEND EMERGENCY WAIVERS FOR HEATING FUELS
Senators John Thune (R-SD) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) introduced bipartisan legislation known as the "Reliable Home Heating Act" (S. 2086) , which is similar to legislation that passed the House earlier in the week -- "Home Heating Emergency Assistance through Transportation (HHEATT) Act of 2014" (H.R. 4076). The legislation would provide state governors with greater autonomy in extending these waivers up to an additional 60 days (for a total of 90 days). It would also provide an early warning system in which the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) would notify governors when propane or heating oil supplies fall below the most recent five year average for more than three consecutive weeks. Additionally, the legislation would extend current emergency declarations for 36 states through May 31, 2014.
Next week, the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee is expected to consider H.R. 4076. However, it is unclear whether Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) will allow the full Senate to consider it.
LETTER URGES IMMEDIATE APPROVAL OF KEYSTONE XL PIPELINE
This week, PMAA, along with like-minded associations, sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry underscoring the importance of swift approval of the Keystone XL pipeline. The letter highlighted the State Department's fifth and final environmental impact statement (EIS) which essentially dispelled environmental critics' claims that the Keystone XL pipeline is not in the nation's best interest. The final EIS argued that Canadian oil sands would be developed with or without the pipeline. Hauling crude oil by rail carries with it a higher CO2 rate and safety concerns. Approving the Keystone XL pipeline would help alleviate these environmental and safety concerns.
Still, even with the many remaining steps and although Obama is forced to choose between labor-union supporters who back the project and environmentalists who oppose it, some analysts believe the latest EIS report boosts the possibility that the pipeline wins U.S. approval as soon as this summer.
To view a copy of the letter, please click here (http://www.pmaa.org/weeklyreview/attachments/API-other%20trade%20associations%20Comments%203-7-14%20final.pdf).
BUSINESSES URGE GOVERNMENT TO PROTECT ECONOMY
PMAA joined other members of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in a letter urging Congress to pass The RAPID Act, a permit streamlining bill (H.R. 2641) designed to create jobs by increasing production. To increase production, the environmental permitting process must be streamlined. H.R.2641 lays out multiple ways to streamline the process including coordinating responsibilities among multiple agencies, and allowing for use of state reviews instead of federal only.
To view a copy of the letter, please click here (http://www.pmaa.org/weeklyreview/attachments/RAPID%20Act%20Coalition%20Letter%20March%202014.pdf).
DOE ADVISES INDUSTRY TO EDUCATE PUBLIC ON EXPORTS
In response to requests from Chevron Corp. and other oil companies, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz reported this week that the energy industry needs to better communicate to Americans that U.S. oil exports are needed since the U.S. still imports five million barrels a day and U.S. oil was nine dollars a barrel less than European crude in 2013.
With the record growth in U.S. oil production from 1.136 million barrels a day last year to 8.121 million at year-end, energy companies want to begin exporting some of the crude where there is a higher market price for the product. Energy policies from the 1973 Arab oil embargo restrict crude exports but do not limit refined products. U.S. refiners are exporting record amounts of gasoline often at below market prices. Producers argue that the U.S. has surpassed Russia and Saudi Arabia as the world's largest producer of oil and natural gas and the time is right to allow for exports of crude. However, some U.S. refiners want to maintain the ban because they currently enjoy cheaper domestically produced crude oil prices (West Texas Intermediate crude oil contract) compared to the world's benchmark known as the Brent crude contract.
It's not entirely clear whether repealing the ban on oil exports will result in higher or lower U.S. gasoline prices. PMAA's Executive Committee decided to remain neutral on oil exports for the foreseeable future.
MENU LABELING GUIDELINES DELAYED UNTIL YEAR END
Although FDA first proposed new menu labeling requirements in early 2011 and was expected to finalize the guidelines early this year, the FDA now hopes to finalize the calorie count disclosure rule by the end of the year, after finishing review of the 900 comments from industry and consumers.
This delay provides more time for Congress to move the PMAA supported "Commonsense Nutrition Disclosure Act" (H.R. 1249 and S. 1756 ) which would ease some of the regulatory burdens attributable to Section 4205 (Menu Labeling) of the 2010 healthcare law.
Section 4205 requires restaurants and convenience store owners with 20 or more locations to list content information for standard menu items, such as posting calorie information on menus and menu-boards. Retailers must also provide additional nutrition information to be made available in writing upon request. The proposed FDA rule would define a "covered entity" as any retailer where more than 50 percent of the store's floor area is devoted to selling food. The caveat is that FDA also included pre-packaged food that is already required to include nutritional information on its packaging which would capture most c-stores.
H.R. 1249 would limit the Section 4205's menu labeling provisions in the health care law to establishments that derive 50 percent or more of their revenue from food for immediate consumption and/or prepared and processed on-site. Prepackaged food would not be considered in this equation.
PMAA believes H.R. 1249 would bring a commonsense solution to regulation which will unfairly burden convenience store owners.
EPA FINALIZES TIER 3 GASOLINE RULE
This week EPA announced plans to finalize its Tier 3 gasoline regulations. The most costly aspect of the rule is the planned reduction in the sulfur content of gasoline starting in 2017. Gasoline refiners have aggressively opposed the proposed rule claiming the regulations will increase the cost of gasoline with virtually no environmental benefit. EPA does not dispute the fact that the rule will increase the cost of gasoline; however, EPA claims the refiner cost estimates are too high. The EPA estimates lowering the sulfur content of gasoline to 15ppm would cost only one cent per gallon while the major refiners put the cost to consumers at between six and nine cents per gallon.
The regulation will not require infrastructure changes at the distributor or retail level and the lower sulfur content is compatible with all gasoline powered cars and trucks. However, the supply bottlenecks and increased gasoline price burden on consumers are a concern to PMAA.
PMAA will be reviewing the final rule closely and will publish a Regulatory Report.
2015 WPMA CONVENTION & CONVENIENCE STORE EXPO LAS VEGAS, NEVADA
Plan now to attend the 2015 WPMA Convention and Convenience Store Expo. It will be held at the Mirage in Las Vegas, Nevada. Mark your calendars for February 17-19, 2015.
MARK YOUR CALENDARS FOR UPCOMING EVENTS IN 2014
May 8-9, 2014 - NPM&CSA Big Dogs event - Red Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas, Nevada
June 3-5, 2014 - MPMCSA Convention - Hilton Garden Inn - Missoula, Montana
June 16-19, 2014 - WOMA Convention - Suncadia Lodge - Cle Elum, Washington
August 6-8, 2014 - IPM&CSA Convention - Coeur d'Alene Resort - Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
August 19-20, 2014 - NMPMA Convention - Marriott Pyramid North - Albuquerque, New Mexico
Petro Pete: "How do they get deer to cross at that yellow road sign?"
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WPMA MEMBER SERVICES
Great opportunity for someone to join the team at Kellerstrass Enterprises in our Salt Lake City office. Looking for someone to assist the office manager in taking care of the daily operational needs. This person would need to be able to input orders into our accounting system. Answer phones with a pleasant attitude and take care of customers as they walk into the facility. Understanding of the billing process would be helpful. Knowledge of the oil and gas industry a plus.
A self-starter, energetic individual that can meet company deadlines and multi task through the day. Able to work in a warehouse environment. Knowledge of excel and ability to sit and work on a computer. Medical, Dental Insurance, 401 K when eligible and Personal Time Off benefits included.
If interested, please fax a resume or email to:
FAX: 801-392-9589 Attention Ryan Murdock/Delinda Huffaker
Bulk Oil and Gas distributor with C-store serving a 200-mile radius supplying fleets, international exploration and production companies as well as local farmers with fuel and related products. Company was established in 1976 and has been providing superior service in the Williston Basin of North Dakota since. Capabilities range from Bulk Fuel Delivery, to Propane Delivery, to onsite high-speed retail fueling islands. Specialty focuses on the Agricultural industry as well as theOil and Gas Field Service industry. Company is dedicated to timely, onsite fuel and propane deliveries. 2010 - 3 million gallons sold; 2011 - 4.1 million gallons sold; 2012 - 4.6 million gallons sold; 2013 - 4.7 million gallons sold.
Non operating truck-stop on .82 acre with commercial kitchen and current rental income. Tanks inspected and pumps certified for 2013. Phase 1 complete on property located in Culbertson, MT.
For More information please call Tom Nelson 406-256-7470 or email firstname.lastname@example.org