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PETROLEUM MARKETERS CALL FOR CRACKDOWN ON FUEL QUALITY AND EXCISE TAX EVASION LAWS

 WASHINGTON, June 30 /PRNewswire/ -- The Petroleum Marketers Association of America (PMAA) today called for tougher enforcement of existing fuel quality and excise tax collection laws. "We are absolutely appalled by the type of behavior highlighted in NBC's `Dateline' program where consumers are not getting the product they pay for," said PMAA Executive Vice President Phillip R. Chisholm. "We believe such behavior is the exception rather than the rule, but a very few `bad apples' can give all marketers a bad name," added Chisholm.
 While PMAA believes that stronger enforcement is necessary as a consumer protection measure, it is also important to retain the competitive viability of the petroleum marketing industry. "Every time the consumer is cheated by buying a lower grade fuel, or the government is cheated by the proper excise tax not being paid, a legitimate petroleum marketer is also being ripped off," said Chisholm.
 "Virtually all independent petroleum marketers are family-owned businesses. They have been in operation for generations. They have survived embargoes, supply disruptions, the onslaught of new rules and regulations and the competitive pressures associated with competing against the largest corporate entities in the world. They have survived because they have supplied quality products at a reasonable price to their respective communities," said Chisholm.
 "These marketers not only want existing laws enforced, they are often the ones who call enforcement officials and report suspected violators," noted Chisholm. "Unfortunately," he added, "these reports are not acted upon as promptly as the legitimate marketer would like. The best way the consumer can protect himself is to do business with someone they know or a company with which they are familiar. In those cases where a problem does develop, the consumer can likely get a positive resolution to the problem," concluded Chisholm.
 The Petroleum Marketers Association of America represents nearly 11,000 independent petroleum marketing companies throughout the nation. Collectively those companies sell nearly 50 percent of the gasoline, 75 percent of the home heating oil, and 60 percent of the diesel fuel sold in this country annually. Most of the companies represented by PMAA are small, family-owned businesses.
 -0- 6/30/93
 /CONTACT: David L. Morehead or Phillip R. Chisholm, both of the Petroleum Marketers Association of America, 703-251-8000/


CO: Petroleum Marketers Association of America ST: District of Columbia IN: OIL SU: LEG

IH-DC -- DC035 -- 7298 06/30/93 15:51 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 30, 1993
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