OPMCA Connection
Keeping You Informed!

OPMCA Connection keeps you informed and current on regulations from all state and national agencies as well as laws pertaining to the petroleum marketing/c-store industry.

Candace McGinnis
Executive Director  

Hannah May
Director of Member Services  

6420 N. Santa Fe, Suite B
Oklahoma City, OK 73116
Phone: (405) 842-6625 
(800) 256-5013 
Fax: (405) 842-9562
2020-2021 Board of Directors

Kurtis Hutchinson, Chairman  
 Hutchinson Oil Company

Jerry Davidson
Pete's Corporation

Teresa Hollenbeck
Red Rock Distributing Company

John Netherton
Danielson Fuel Services

Jason Flinn
Flowers Oil Company

Rob Toth
Coffeyville Resource
We are excited to get the OPMCA membership together for the 2020 Fall Outing hosted at the Shangri-La Golf Club and Resort located on Grand Lake! Members will once again enjoy two days of golfing, dinner and reception and a two-hour yacht charter. We have a special celebration planned to honor our incoming chairman Kurtis Hutchinson as well!

We hope you can join us in September!
Click Here to View all PMAA Coronavirus Related Resources for Petroleum Marketers Including all Regulatory Reports
Thursday, July 30, 2020
  • 2020 OPMCA Membership Directory

  • TSA Approves an Extension of the Hazmat Material Exemption

  • Deadline to File Claims for Retroactive Biodiesel Blender Credit and Alternative Fuel Credits is August 11, 2020

  • IRS Experiencing Delays Processing Motor Fuel Excise Tax and Biodiesel/Alternative Fuel Mixture Claims

  • EPA Administrator Says Ozone Standard Will Not be Raised

  • FDA Orders Retailers to Stop Selling 13 tobacco products

  • Negotiations Over the Next COVID-19 Relief Package Remain in Limbo for Now

  • PMAA Requests Guidance on Enforcing Mask Mandates

  • Dept. of Labor Issues Additional COVID-19 Guidance for Workers, Employers

  • Federated Insurance July Educational Articles
2020 OPMCA Membership Directory
The 2020 OPMCA Membership Directories have been distributed! If you do not receive yours in the coming weeks, or would like extras, please contact the OPMCA office.

A digital copy of the directory can be found here.
TSA Approves an Extension of the Hazmat Material Exemption

Department of Homeland Security’s Transportation Security Administration (TSA) issued an extension of an exemption that allows states to recognize the validity of expired hazardous materials endorsements (HME) through October 29, 2020. PMAA worked closely with the TSA to obtain the extension because many drivers are still unable to renew their hazardous material endorsements due to COVID-19 related closures and operational delays experience by state motor vehicle licensing agencies nationwide.

The TSA exemption only applies in states that adopt the extension and only for HMEs expiring between March 1, 2020 and October 29, 2020.

Click here to read the full PMAA Regulatory Alert.

Deadline to File Claims for Retroactive Biodiesel Blender Credit and Alternative Fuel Credits is August 11, 2020
Earlier this year the IRS issued a special one-time claim procedure ( IRS Notice 2020-8) for the $1.00 per gallon biodiesel blender credit and the 50 cents per gallon alternative fuel and alternative fuel mixture credits. The credits were reinstated retroactively for calendar years 2018 and 2019 under the Taxpayer Certainty and Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2019 (the Act). The special procedures allow a one-time single filing for credits and payments covering the entire 2018 and 2019 claim period. Congress reauthorized the biodiesel blenders credit through December 31, 2022 and alternative fuel and the alternative fuel mixture credits through December 31, 2020. Only credits generated from blends created during calendar years 2018 and 2019 are subject to the retroactive filing procedures.

Click here to read the full PMAA Compliance Bulletin.

IRS Experiencing Delays Processing Motor Fuel Excise Tax and Biodiesel/Alternative Fuel Mixture Claims
PMAA expressed concern to the IRS over the lengthy delays many fuel marketers and heating fuel dealers are experiencing with the processing of their motor fuel excise tax and blender mixture credit claims. According to the IRS, the claims process has been slowed significantly by the COVID-19 emergency. A larger than normal number of IRS claim processing employees are either ill, in quarantine or caring for ill family members. The claims affected by the processing delay include:

  • IRS Form 8849, Claim of Refund of Excise Taxes

  • IRS Form 720 Schedule C, Biodiesel & Alternative Fuel Credits (taken against existing FET liability)

  • IRS Form 8864, Biodiesel and Renewable Diesel Mixture Credit (credit for tax year in which the sale or use occurred)

  • IRS Form 6426, Alternative Fuel Mixture Credit (credit for tax year in which the sale or use occurred)

  • IRS Form 4136, Credit for Excise Tax Paid on Fuel (credit for current income tax year)

The IRS explained there is no way for taxpayers to track the progress of their claims at this time. Claims are processed in the order in which they were received on a first-in/first-out basis. Processing is currently running 2 to 3 weeks behind schedule, sometimes longer according to the IRS. The IRS is urging patience and expects the backlog to be cleared up shortly. In the meantime, PMAA reminds marketers that the IRS must pay interest on claims sent by mail that are not paid 45 days after receipt or 20 days in the case of claims sent electronically. By law, the interest rate the IRS must pay on both overpayment and underpayment of tax is adjusted quarterly. For the second quarter, which ends on June 30, 2020, the interest rate is 5% per year, compounded daily. For the third quarter, which ends on September 30, 2020, the interest rate is 3% per year, compounded daily.

EPA Administrator Says Ozone Standard Will Not be Raised
EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler announced that the agency will not raise the current National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ozone. Wheeler said the agency will keep the 70 parts per billion (ppb) that was set in 2015 by the Obama Administration after data showed that ozone concentrations fell 4 percent between 2017 to 2019. In 2015, the Obama Administration reduced the ozone standard from 75ppb which was set in 2008. Under the Clean Air Act, the EPA is required to set NAAQS every 5 years.
In a statement, Administrator Wheeler said, “Under President Trump, the U.S. has made significant progress in reducing ozone concentrations across the nation. Based on a review of the scientific literature and recommendation from our independent science advisors, we are proposing to retain existing ozone standards which will ensure the continued protection of both public health and the environment.”

FDA Orders Retailers to Stop Selling 13 tobacco products
The FDA said that certain tobacco products from R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co. and Heritage Tobacco LLC can no longer be distributed, imported, sold, marketed or promoted in the United States.

Click here for the story.

Negotiations Over the Next COVID-19 Relief Package Remain in Limbo for Now
Senate Republicans and the White House continued to negotiate their next COVID-19 relief package to counter the House Democrats’ $3.5 trillion COVID-19 response bill aka “the HEROS Act” which passed in May. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is now expected to release a set of bills next Monday known as CARES II which is likely to cost approximately $1 trillion. GOP intraparty division over how to tackle the current federal unemployment benefits, set to expire in eight days, is one of the last remaining hurdles to overcome.
As reported previously by PMAA, the next COVID-19 Relief Package is expected to include reasonable COVID-19 liability coverage, state and local government funding, direct payments to middle/low income households, PPP modifications and a reduced amount of an expanded federal weekly unemployment benefit.

COVID-19 Liability Coverage:
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has conditioned any further COVID-19 relief package must include reasonable liability protections which would provide safe harbor provisions for businesses that meet safety guidelines as well as making it easier to force lawsuits into federal courts, and imposing caps on the damages that can be awarded.

State and Local Funding:
State and local governments received around $150 billion through the CARES Act to pay for unbudgeted expenses tied to COVID-19. There is a big push from state and local governments for hundreds of billions more, along with the ability to make up for lost revenue. Republicans argue there are still billions of dollars left in the pipeline from the original CARES Act that states and local governments have been unable to access due to rigid guidelines. The McConnell CARES II approach is likely to provide flexibility to allow state and local governments to now access those funds, along with robust new money for K-12 schools and colleges, tied to plans for reopening educational institutions this autumn – but no significant new infusion of cash for state and local governments.

Direct Payments to Taxpayers:
It is expected that an additional round of direct payments to individuals and households will be included in the next COVID-19 response package while omitting the payroll tax reduction favored by President Trump. The Senate Republican package is also likely to include “pro-growth” provisions to support the resurgence of the US economy, with an emphasis on domestic manufacturing and research and development.

Unemployment Benefits:
The most controversial part of the next COVID-19 response package revolves around whether to extend the additional $600 weekly federal unemployment benefit payments established under The CARES Act law. The House Democrats “Heroes Act” bill would extend the additional $600 per week payment through Jan. 31, 2021. McConnell has made it clear that the additional $600 weekly payment is a non-starter. It is likely that federal unemployment benefit will be extended but not at the $600 figure.

Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Modifications:
It is expected that some PPP modifications will be included in the next COVID-19 relief package such as streamlined loan forgiveness for small PPP loans under $150k. Additionally, a second round of PPP loans for businesses under 300 workers or within the SBA size threshold for their industry who can demonstrate 50 percent lost revenue compared with a reference period could also be included.

Bottom Line:
It is safe to say that there will likely be another COVID-19 relief package by early August. Stay tuned.

PMAA Requests Guidance on Enforcing Mask Mandates
More than half of U.S. states have implemented mask requirements in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and some require businesses to enforce the policies, or face penalties. These mandates can present problems for business owners and employees, especially when dealing with aggressive people who refuse to wear a mask or to leave the business. Further, some states list exemptions to the mask mandate, but how are employees to know if a person is legitimately exempt? At PMAA’s request, DOE (the lead department for all energy government and industry disaster response) in coordination with DHS and FEMA, is seeking guidance or recommendations for areas that must comply with enforcing mask mandates. The guidance should help states, businesses and employees to know what to do under different scenarios in order to be safe and in compliance with state and federal laws.

Dept. of Labor Issues Additional COVID-19 Guidance for Workers, Employers
The Department of Labor’s (DOL’s) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) announced additional guidance for workers and employers on how the protections and requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), and the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) affect the workplace as workplaces reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic. Click here for more information.

Federated Insurance July Educational Articles
Property/Casualty and/or Workers Compensation subjects

a Human Resources-related question and answer from independent HR legal professionals

concepts related to Life and Disability insurance