2016 Advocacy Recap
Defeating Ban of Tobacco Products at Convenience Stores
CIOMA was a key element in defeating SB 1400 (Weickowski) that prohibited tobacco sales at convenience stores. The measure was unable to garner an “aye” motion in the Assembly Business & Professions Committee – over 300 opponents showed up for the pivotal hearing in August. CIOMA provided an essential center-pole support for both Capitol lobbying efforts and through effective coordination of persuasive grassroots communications.
Financial Impact – Legal sale of tobacco products provide essential income to the convenience store industry. In general, tobacco products provide about 1/3rd of c-store net income. CIOMA protected essential bottom-line revenue for our retail members, and assisted in keeping valued customers for our wholesale and fuel transportation sectors.
UST Program Continuation
Our association continues to be the “go-to” organization on improvement of the state UST cleanup and reimbursement programs. We maintain top-level communication with state and federal UST program officials and constantly strive to shorten site closure timeframes, reduce cleanup costs and improve claim payments turn-around.
Financial Impact – Continuation of claims coverage up to $1 million in remediation costs; grants and low interest loans for tank removal/replacement; providing for lower secondary insurance premiums; prescribing quicker, more cost-effective cleanups. Business-saving in magnitude.
Labor and Business Management Issues
CIOMA worked diligently to protect our members’ ability to provide a desirable workplace and allow employee flexibility in meeting their duties. Examples include defeat of mandatory double pay on holidays, unworkable advanced scheduling requirements, protecting fair business practices law, and favorably amending oil change interval disclosures.
Financial Impact – Significant savings in workforce deployment and compliance requirements as well as allowing common-sense agreements between employees and employers regarding working conditions.
Air Toxic Emissions
While the State tripled baseline air toxic exposure criteria for petroleum emissions, CIOMA continues to be a key factor in assuring fuel delivery as a “critical service”, providing flexibility and stretched-out timelines for retail and wholesale facilities members having to meet exposure reporting and emission controls.
Financial Impact – Tens-of-thousands $$$ savings in avoiding increased reporting, site modeling and emission controls.
Defeated "Packing" SCAQMD
For our South Coast members, big, recent changes in the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) Board and leadership provoked retaliatory legislation allowing the Governor and legislative leadership to “pack” the board with their own appointments. CIOMA was part of a victorious coalition that squelched SB 1356 (De Leon).
Financial Impact – Thousands, to tens-of-thousands $$$ savings in unreasonable, unachievable air quality requirements.
Assured AST’s can Meet Reasonable Construction Standards
CIOMA worked effectively with the Agricultural community in obtaining verification from the State Fire Marshal’s Office that aboveground fuel storage tanks need to meet common-sense Fire Code requirements for construction and installation.
Financial Impact – Tens-of-thousands – hundreds of thousands $$$ of savings in not having to retrofit ag, field and temporary AST’s.
Developed Best-Practices Advisory on Truck Driver Meal Period Provision
CIOMA has developed a set of best-practices with petroleum-carrying truck drivers which recognizes the similarities to explosive materials truck drivers and the ability to take on-duty lunch breaks. This was accomplished through extended communications with the state Labor Commissioner. We currently are supporting a federal preemption of State meal and rest break laws.
Financial Impact – Avoidance of substantial lawsuit settlements, ranging into the $$ millions, due to confusion over the need for petroleum truck drivers to stay with their vehicles at all times.
Automatic Temperature Compensation at Fuel Dispensers
CIOMA saw a years-long proactive involvement in keeping a requirement for automatic temperature compensation (ATC) at fuel dispensers off the books. A class-action lawsuit was dismissed against California fuel suppliers finding that dispensing of temperature-compensated fuel was contrary to state law and fueling practice.
Financial Impact – Savings of approximately $2000/dispenser to retrofit; $10,000-20,000/dispenser if newer models were required.
Vapor Recovery Requirements
Our Association continues to lead the fight on the overhaul of the state Enhanced Vapor Recovery requirements. While CARB has indicated EVR will not go away, they have developed a number of ways to reduce costs, penalties and regulatory burden on station owners, at least for the time-being. We were a primary force in obtaining reduced EVR penalties for members and other small service station when an EVR retrofit deadline loomed. Also, CIOMA was able to delay EVR requirements on bulk plants with fuel dispensing equipment.
Estimated Economic Benefit for Service Stations – In excess of $9,000,000.
Saved Ability to Fight Below-Cost Pricing
CIOMA was the principle force in organizing opposition to a measure that would have eliminated marketers’ ability to fight and challenge predatory, below-cost pricing. Measure failed to pass from its original committee.
Financial Impact – Saved the ability of retailers to fight predatory pricing by big chains. Business-saving in magnitude.
Helped Defeat Commercialization of Rest Stops
We fought and defeated a measure that would have allowed Caltrans to place commercial development in state-owned rest areas, close to existing highway businesses. We also helped defeat a national effort to eliminate federal prohibition of highway rest stop commercialization.
Financial Impact – Saved members highway-oriented businesses from unfair, subsidized competition. Business-saving in magnitude.
Regulation of Vapor Recovery on Aboveground Storage Tanks (AST/EVR)
After 4 long years, CIOMA was able to convince CARB that simple white paint and a commonly available pressure-vent valve would provide best achievable emission control for tank retrofits. Final certification of the “white tank” requirements to be finalized shortly.
Cost savings – Approximately $10,000 - $20,000/AST, from the time CIOMA began its involvement.
Obtained Fuel Waiver to Allow Sale of Winter Fuel Blend
Stepping up to the plate, when wholesale fuel prices were rocketing, we were able to secure the Governor’s waiver of gasoline RVP, allowing the sale of winter-blend gasoline weeks earlier than normal.
Financial Impact – Savings of Hundreds of millions of $$$ in wholesale fuel costs through rapidly decreasing spot market prices. Obtaining first-ever waiver in non-disaster situation.
CARB On-Road Truck Regulations
In the third year of fighting this regulation, significant reductions in potential compliance costs were achieved. In addition, compliance scheduling was spread out over a longer period, decreasing the annual expenditures needed on emission equipment. Continuing attacks on emission calculations (junk science) have brought to question the ultimate necessity of diesel regulations.
Financial Impact – Reduced potential compliance costs by at least half, delayed implementation by two years and provides a more reasonable compliance timeframe.
CIOMA was, for 2 years running, a key element in defeating a measure that would have required GPS and remote stopping devices on fuel trucks and other hazardous materials transport equipment.
Cost Savings: $750 - $3000 per vehicle in equipment costs; $2000 – $4000/year/vehicle in service costs, allowing marketers to determine security needs based upon company-specific criteria.