Lawmakers seek to prevent disaster-related gas shortages
Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis (R,C,I-Brooklyn, Staten Island) and Senator Marty Golden (R,C,I-Brooklyn) today joined Assembly members Jim Tedisco (R,C,I-Glenville) and Pete Lopez (R,C,I-Schoharie) in announcing that they are drafting new legislation to help prevent the long lines and long waits for gas that occurred following Superstorm Sandy.
In many cases, gas stations that had fuel were unable to remain open due to lack of electricity. This caused gas shortages and rationing downstate resulting in frustratingly tiring lines at the gas pump.
The legislation would provide a tax credit of up to $15,000 to encourage gas stations and convenience stores across the state to install commercial generators to keep gas flowing when the power grid is down. A commercial-size generator costs between $5,000 and $30,000 to install and up to another $8,000 a year to maintain.
There are 7,200 service stations in New York, about half of which are located in the New York City area.
“The lines of people waiting to purchase gasoline in my district in the days following Hurricane Sandy were unlike anything I had seen before. The gas lines were comprised not only of cars but also people on foot in search of fuel to power generators for basic necessities,” said Malliotakis. “By providing a tax credit to these small businesses to purchase generators, a big ticket item they might otherwise be unable to afford, we are investing in and better preparing our communities for a future power outage or blackout.”
“As we begin a new legislative session, the people of New York City and State will look to see how New York's government will address, and thus take measures to prevent, a gas crisis like we saw following Superstorm Sandy. This tax incentive will encourage gas stations to take the necessary steps to be ready for such instances. A common sense solution like this will prevent the long lines, the arguments and give people peace of mind, knowing they will be able to get gas and subsequently travel,” said Golden.