.25 Temporary Operation of Station by Producer or Refiner.

A. Applicability.

(1) After July 13, 1979, a producer or refiner may operate a retail service station previously dealer-operated for a period not to exceed 90 days and pursuant to a Certificate of Registration issued under Regulation .07E(1) of this chapter if the:

(a) Dealer has died (if a sole proprietor);

(b) Dealer has vacated the station in breach of the lease;

(c) Dealer has been evicted by the producer or refiner for cause;

(d) Producer or refiner has notified all of its dealers in the State of its intent to withdraw from the Maryland market in compliance with Title 1 of the Petroleum Marketing Practices Act (15 U.S.C. §2801 et seq.) and the dealer has agreed to vacate the station before the announced market withdrawal date; or

(e) Producer or refiner has acquired the retail service station from the dealer as a result of a:

(i) Purchase of the retail service station property from the dealer, or

(ii) Merger or acquisition of stock in the dealer or its parent corporation by a producer or refiner.

(2) Pursuant to this section, the producer or refiner may immediately commence operation of the retail service station and operate it for 5 business days under the Certificate of Registration issued to the prior dealer if, during that period, the producer or refiner notifies the Bureau in writing of its commencement. The notification shall set forth the date operation by the producer or refiner commenced, the address of the retail service station, and a statement of the reason for the operation by the producer or refiner. The date of commencement shall constitute the initial day of the 90-day temporary operation period.

B. Applications for Extensions.

(1) Applications to the Comptroller for an extension of the time period specified in §A of this regulation will be considered only if they are submitted in writing and, with regard to each station specified therein, contain:

(a) The station address;

(b) The basis for the applicability of §A of this regulation;

(c) The name and address of the previous dealer;

(d) The reason why the extension is sought;

(e) The duration of the extension sought; and

(f) A complete description of the actions being taken to locate a new dealer.

(2) Applicants shall promptly provide additional information when requested by the Comptroller.

C. Action by Comptroller on Applications.

(1) Decisions by the Comptroller on applications made pursuant to §B of this regulation will be written and sent by certified mail to the applicant at the return address appearing on the application.

(2) The Comptroller may grant or deny the extension sought or may grant an extension for a period of time less than that sought in the application.

D. Operation Pending Action by Comptroller. Operation of a previously dealer-operated station by a producer or refiner in excess of the time period specified in §A of this regulation and during the pendency of an application made pursuant to §B of this regulation will not be allowed unless the contrary has been authorized in writing by the Comptroller.

E. Entitlement to Temporary Certificate of Registration. A decision granting an extension to the time period specified in §A of this regulation or an authorization issued under §D of this regulation entitles the recipient to a temporary retail service station dealer Certificate of Registration pursuant to Regulation .07E(2) of this chapter.