Westminster Health Board Ends Quest For All Tobacco Store Ban

On Nov. 19, the Westminster, Mass., Board Of Health reversed its position and ended a proposed plan that would have made the town the first in the nation to ban the sale of all tobacco products in stores.

The 2-to-1 health board vote came a week after a public hearing called to solicit input on a proposed ban ended abruptly when the health board chair felt the more than 500 member audience was too unruly. The board was due to vote on the issue Dec. 1.

One convenience store owner said at the public hearing that he would have to close his business and added the ban would send business to a neighboring town. Westminster Selectman Wayne Walker said the “radical proposal” was not in the town’s best interests.

Steve Ryan, executive director of the New England Convenience Store Assn. (NECSA), said a few weeks ago more than 1,000 people signed petitions opposing the ban. On Nov. 20 he commented on the latest action and said, “I'm very pleased to see the Westminster Board of Health has withdrawn this irrational proposal. NECSA was proud to help the local retailers in their efforts to oppose this measure. The 1,300 signatures they collected on the NECSA countertop petitions are testament to the community-wide support for these retailers and the overwhelming opposition to a ban on legal products.”

Return to Home

NYACS Issues Member Alert On Ferocious Buffalo Area Snowstorm

A ferocious lake-effect snowstorm piled three to six feet of snow on certain areas south and east of Buffalo, stranding motorists and homeowners, closing highways, causing power outages and activating the National Guard. Convenience stores in the affected communities struggled to remain open as concerns about product deliveries began to mount.

Among the hardest hit areas were Lancaster, South Cheektowaga, Elma, Alden, West Seneca, Hamburg, Orchard Park and East Aurora. Other communities 10 to 20 miles away received only a few inches, although lake-effect snow bands were expected to continue Nov. 20-21, bringing as much as two more feet to some areas. Parts of Central New York and the North Country were also impacted by the storm.

NYACS members who sell gasoline are cautioned that, when a state of emergency is declared, it activates the state’s anti price gouging law in those areas, prohibiting excessive price increases. NYACS President Jim Calvin said, “Passing along any wholesale price hikes is fine, but exercise restraint in going beyond that, and be sure to keep records of your wholesale and retail prices. Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is already rattling the ‘price gouging’ sabre.”

NYACS members in affected areas are urged to contact Mr. Calvin at the NYACS office, 518-432-1400, or on his cell at 518-441-4918, or at jim@nyacs.org if they need assistance resolving storm-related issues.

Return to Home

Gulf Launches New Online Trading Platform

Gulf Oil LP, Framingham, Mass., has launched Gulf Online Market, the company’s new online trading platform. The platform, which went live on Nov.19 for Gulf’s heating oil customers, was developed to address the increasing volatility of the petroleum market, with the objective of offering pricing programs that will give customers the lowest possible procurement costs on a daily basis.

The Gulf Online Market will provide customers with a timely and "accessible-from-anywhere" portal with real-time pricing throughout the day. Highlights include: prompt purchase contracts with a minimum volume of 7,500 gallons; mobile access for live NYMEX (Mercantile Exchange) related quotes with flexible volumes; forward-fixed price values; and heat curve-based forward contracts.

Return to Home

Latest Word in C-Store News...

7-Eleven announced last week it will soon begin selling its own brand of over-the-counter medications. The new 7-Select line will include non-prescription drug treatments for pain, cold and flu, allergy, gastrointestinal upset, cough, sore throat; sleep aids and children’s medications.

• Rutter’s Farm Store, Mechanicsburg, Pa., has been named the recipient of the 2014 Commercial Recycling Award given by the Mechanicsburg Borough Council in recognition of the company’s exemplary recycling practices. Since opening in December 2013, the Rutter’s store has recycled more than 400 pounds of fryer grease and 17 tons of cardboard and other materials. In 2013, Rutter’s recycled 81,370 pounds of fryer grease and more than 645 tons of cardboard and other materials company wide.

Return to Home