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October 28, 2016 | Vol. 66, No. 21

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In This Issue

Dear PEI Member:

On October 12, PEI Executive Vice President Bob Renkes wrote his 761st and final TulsaLetter. Today’s issue is my first as the new editor of this venerable publication. Following the model set by Bob and his predecessor Howard Upton, my goal will be to synthesize essential industry news, report key regulatory developments and provide a little analysis to help you do your job better. To make this a two-way conversation, I also hope you will forward me any items you’d like to appear in the TulsaLetter, as well as comments or suggestions you may have about the newsletter itself. You’ll find my email address (rlong@pei.org) in every issue. One last note: while I’ll also continue to serve as editor-in-chief of the PEI Journal, the day-to-day operation of that publication is now in the capable hands of Managing Editor Kristen Wright. You can reach Kristen at kwright@pei.org.

But enough about all that—let’s get started.

The 2016 PEI Convention concluded in Atlanta, Georgia, on October 21. The 1,575 members and guests in attendance took part in 24 separate educational sessions, visited 641 fuel equipment-related booths, and made countless contacts during various PEI-sponsored networking events. Here are a few highlights of the four-day gathering.

At the annual membership meeting on October 20, Craig Hoyer, president of Kubat Equipment, Denver, Colorado, was elected the 67th president of PEI, beginning January 1, 2017. Hoyer, who is currently the vice president of PEI, will succeed 2016 PEI President Steve Trabilsy, president of Accurate Tank Technologies, North Aurora, Illinois.

Elected as 2017 vice president was Robert Peavey, president of PumpTex, Inc., Beaumont, Texas. Peavey just completed a one-year term as the treasurer of PEI and has previously represented District 8 on the board of directors.

New TulsaLetter Editor

PEI Convention Recap

YE Conference Registration Open

2017 Renewable Fuels Standard Expected Soon



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Seven new directors were installed during the membership meeting: Ron Sledd, Beneficial Systems, Jetersville, Virginia (District 2); Tiina McCombie, National Energy Equipment, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada (District 4); Mani Sundaram, Double Check Company, Kansas City, Missouri (District 6); John Farrell, D&H United Fueling Systems, Schertz, Texas (District 8); Greg McGee, PMP Corporation, Avon, Connecticut (District 10); Tim Weiss, Morrison Bros., Dubuque, Iowa (District 12); and Patrick Vuchetich, Williams & Co. Consulting, Kansas City, Missouri (Affiliate Division).

The emotional highlight of the membership meeting was a special video tribute to Bob Renkes, who will retire from PEI on May 31, 2017, after 38 years of service to the association.

A “State of the Union” presentation at the membership meeting included results from a survey of PEI members conducted earlier this month. Key takeaways were the following:

  • Distributors rate this year’s business climate at 7.3 on a scale of 1 to 10.
  • EMV, new construction, work related to the 2015 federal underground storage tank (UST) regulations, tank sales/replacements and dispenser sales are the brightest spots for distributors.
  • Some 63 percent of distributors expect to employ more people in 2017.
  • As for disappointments, distributors put the service technician shortage and EMV frustrations at the top of the list.
  • Manufacturers score the year at 6.2 on the 1 to 10 scale.
  • Innovative new products and international sales are the brightest spots for manufacturers.
  • Manufacturers cite traditional product lines, domestic sales and decision lead times as their biggest challenges in 2016.

If you were unable to attend the membership meeting or want a refresher, the PEI website has the complete slide deck for the State of the Union presentation. A video of the presentation also will be available soon.

PEI’s board met twice during the convention. Among actions taken during these meetings, the directors:

  • Appointed Charlie Burns, president of Oscar W. Larson Co., Clarkston, Michigan, as the new treasurer of the association.
  • Appointed Steve Trabilsy to a three-year term on the PEI Foundation Board of Governors.
  • Discussed the status of PEI’s service training initiatives, recommended practices and membership.

The 2017 PEI Convention at the NACS Show is set for October 17-20, 2017, in Chicago.

Registration is now open for the 2017 PEI Young Executives Winter Conference, Feb. 8-10, 2017, at the Casa Monica Hotel in St. Augustine, Florida. Speakers will be Ryan Estis and Bob Renkes. Estis will speak on “The Communication Revolution,” and Renkes will present “Pearls of Wisdom” collected from recent conversations with past PEI presidents.

Estis is the former chief strategy officer for a $200 million division of McCann-Erickson Advertising and a leading expert on business performance, leadership, sales effectiveness and the future of work. Renkes, who is executive vice president and general counsel of PEI, began his career with PEI in 1979 and has served in his present position since 1987.

Early registration (through Dec. 16) is $495 for PEI Young Executives members and $595 for nonmembers (nonmember fee includes a $100 lifetime Young Executives membership). Spouses or guests may attend for $125, which includes all meals and receptions. To register or view the conference schedule, click here. Questions regarding registration should be directed to Sondra Sutton at (918) 236-3967 or ssutton@pei.org.

Room reservations at the Casa Monica Hotel may be made by calling (888) 213-8903 and referencing the PEI Young Executives Conference. Discounted room rates of $229 per night are valid until Jan. 14. The Casa Monica Hotel is a member of the National Trust Historic Hotels of America and was designated one of the “Top Hotels in the U.S.” by Conde Nast Traveler.

PEI’s Young Executives Program is open to full-time employees of any PEI member company who are between the ages of 21 and 45.

On October 19, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sent its final targets for 2017 biofuel blending to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Approval from OMB is expected by the end of November. While the final mandates will not be known until OMB completes its review, in May the EPA proposed increasing the renewable fuel in the nation’s gasoline supply from 18.11 billion gallons in 2016 to 18.8 billion gallons in 2017. Nearly 80 percent of the proposed amount—14.8 billion gallons—would come from corn-based ethanol. 

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PDOT) will pay a penalty of $26,066 for UST violations at two facilities storing diesel fuel. According to a press release from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), PDOT facilities in Brownsville and Franklin did not conduct proper monitoring or testing for leaks on pipes and did not maintain proper monitoring records for the USTs. None of the violations resulted in a release.

A federal district court in Texas has agreed to expedite arguments in a suit filed by 21 state attorneys general seeking to halt the U.S. Department of Labor’s new overtime rules. The rules, which would classify essentially all employees earning less than $47,476 as exempt workers entitled to overtime protection, are scheduled to take effect December 1, 2016. The court denied the plaintiffs’ request for an injunction to temporarily stop implementation of the rules but agreed to hold oral arguments in the case on November 16, two weeks before the planned effective date.

“RaceTrac, which is based in Atlanta
and operates more than 400 stations, plans to start selling E15 at 100 of its locations in Georgia, Florida, Louisiana and Texas over the next three years.”—Houston Chronicle, September 13, 2016
“An EPA proposal would reclassify ethanol blends above E15 as ‘ethanol flex fuels,’ potentially opening the door to wider use of these blends, according to Hemmings Motor News.…The agency hopes this will encourage more interest in both flex-fuel vehicles and the ‘blender pumps’ that are required to add greater amounts of ethanol to gasoline.”—Green Car Reports, October 10, 2016
“A battery supplier to General Motors thinks the automaker will sell more than 30,000 of its new Chevrolet Bolt electric sedans next year—a major boost for flagging EV sales, if it happens. Many in the industry view the mid-size Bolt EV as a key test of whether electric vehicles will go mainstream in the U.S….Last year, the Nissan Leaf EV, the top-selling mainstream electric vehicle in the U.S., had 17,269 sales—a substantial drop from 2014.”—Dallas Morning News, October 18, 2016
"An across-the-aisle Bundesrat resolution calls on the EU [European Union] Commission in Brussels to pass directives assuring that [at the] ‘latest in 2030, only zero-emission passenger vehicles will be approved’ for use on EU roads. Germany’s Bundesrat is a legislative body representing the sixteen states of Germany. On its own, the resolution has no legislative effect….However, German regulations traditionally have shaped EU and UNECE [United Nations Economic Commission for Europe] regulations.”—Forbes, Oct. 8, 2016

Petroleum Solutions, Inc.
(PSI), Edinburg, Texas, has appointed Stan Pier as a trainer to help expand the company’s Fuel Systems Technical Training Program into the DFW region. The company’s new training facility will be located at PSI’s Grand Prairie branch, 1362 W. Carrier Parkway, Grand Prairie, TX 75050.  
Franklin Fueling Systems has named Tammie Scadden as a senior product manager for fuel management systems and Nicole Keppy as a product manager for service station/hardware transport systems.
Icon Containment Solutions, North Salt Lake, Utah, has selected Caliber Professional Sales Services to represent their sump and containment leak repair and corrosion prevention products in TX, NM, OK, LA, and AR. 


  • MIBA, Inc., dba Reliable Construction Services, Dayton, Ohio (dis)
  • PwC, New York, New York (aff)
  • FOI Laboratories, Vancouver, Washington (aff)


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© 2016
Petroleum Equipment Institute
P. O. Box 2380
Tulsa, OK 74101-2380

The TulsaLetter (ISSN 0193-9467) is published two or three times each month by the Petroleum Equipment Institute. Rick C. Long, Editor. Opinions expressed are the opinions of the Editor. Basic circulation confined to PEI members.