2014 Update—March 3rd to 15th

On Tuesday the 4th I headed to Dover for a House Democratic Caucus meeting.  We heard a presentation from the Governor’s staff on his Clean Water for Delaware proposal (see http://governor.delaware.gov/clean_water_plan.shtml),  we discussed the budget process, the transportation proposal ($500 million infrastructure new spending over five years, http://governor.delaware.gov/transportation_investment_plan.shtml), and other legislative issues.

I hosted my monthly coffee at Panera on the morning of Wednesday the 5th, and that evening I stopped by a meet and greet for city council candidate Shirley Wilson.  On Thursday the 6th I attended a fundraiser for the 25th RD Democratic committee, and then attended the monthly meeting of the 23rd RD Democratic committee.  On Friday the 7th I spent about 90 minutes with Newark City Planner Mike Fortner, going over their entire 150+ page draft Comprehensive Plan.  On Saturday the 8th I was door-knocking in West Branch with Shirley Wilson.

On Monday the 10th I attended a board meeting of the Delaware Coalition Against Gun Violence.  On Tuesday I attended a meeting of manufactured housing homeowner advocates in Dover, and then attended the meeting of the policy subcommittee of the public effort to identify changed required to support homebirth midwifery in Delaware.  The meeting was refreshingly constructive.  On Thursday the 13th I hosted an education town hall at Maclary Elementary School with Christina School District Superintendent Freeman Williams.  On Friday I spent much of the morning at Newark Center for Creative Learning, chatting with a class of students studying governments.  We had a very lively and wide-ranging discussion.

In emails over the past two weeks I have been quite busy with emails on manufactured housing and midwifery.  I have been monitoring my legislation on manufactured housing (HB 106, HB 107, HB 233, HB 234), on criminal justice (HB 229, conditional drivers licenses), good government (SB 48, redistricting), along with in-progress legislation on manufactured housing, campaign finance reform, nutrition (March is National Nutrition Month), economic policy (EITC, Earned Income Tax Credit), health (HB 241, e-cigarettes), state employees’ pensions (HB 137).

I have also been researching colleagues’ legislation, with an eye to requesting improvements, via amendments.  These bills include HB 60 (direct shipment of wine), HB 196 (source of income for rental applications).

 have also been working on next year’s budget, and specifically what adjustments are needed in order to enable us to move forward legislation that is held up on the cost (HB 23 on the recording of school board meetings, and my HB 169 (the PILOT bill compensating the city of Newark for the large amount of tax-exempt property within the city).  I have further been involved with a bill (HB 195) to improve how Delaware determines how much money to spend each year on infrastructure (roads, schools, bridges).

I have remained on top of the process of considering the data center/power plant proposal, including learning more about the Newark Board of Adjustment’s consideration this Wednesday night from 6-10pm at Newark High School of the two appeals filed challenging the city’s conditional approval of the proposal’s zoning.

We are working to put full curbs at the two vacant properties ‘linking’ Nonantum and Chapel Woods, to further discourage people from illegally driving on this property.

We start a four-week legislative session on Tuesday, and next week looks CRAZY with meetings.  The ‘break’ is over—time to get to work!