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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session


Posted: January 14, 2016 09:10 AM
From: Senator Elder A. Vogel, Jr.
To: All Senate members
Subject: Pennsylvania Summer Gas Exception

In the near future I intend to introduce legislation which will correct a regulatory issue relating to gasoline in Pennsylvania.

In 2012, Act 208 was signed into law creating the Automotive Fuel Testing and Disclosure Program within the Department of Agriculture. This program is intended to ensure consumer protection in regards to fuels sold to consumers. Act 208 adopts the most current fuel regulations in NIST Handbook 130 (National Institute of Standards and Technology). An issue has presented itself with this regulation that could affect gasoline supply and pricing throughout all of Pennsylvania.

A portion of the adopted regulation authorizes a 1-lb Vapor Pressure waiver for gasoline sold in Pennsylvania which is set to expire on May 1, 2016. Simply put, the sunset date will expire prior to the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standard being modified to continue this important waiver. This sunset could have dramatic negative effects on gasoline supply and consumers. Low RVP or summer gas, which has been used in the seven county Pittsburgh area for years, can cause supply disruption and higher prices. The DEP is in the process of repealing this RVP requirement for that area. Similarly, losing the 1-lb Vapor Pressure waiver in the regulation adopted by Act 208, without action from the ASTM, could result in similar supply disruptions and higher costs to the consumer.

This bill will simply ensure that Pennsylvania can continue to receive the vapor pressure waiver.

Please join me in co-sponsoring this important piece of legislation. Please contact Michael Rader of my office if you have any questions or concerns at mrader@pasen.gov.

Introduced as SB1123