2016 Update—March 13th to 27th

On Monday the 14th I attended a board meeting of the Delaware Coalition Against Gun Violence, which is organizing an event tonight with Former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords, and an event on April 11th with the Team 26 riders (http://www.team26.org/). On Tuesday morning the 15th I had a meeting on manufactured housing in Dover before session, and attended a reception with home builders after session. On Wednesday I attended a luncheon with the building trades before session. On Thursday the 17th before session I attended the Small Business Caucus which focused on (opposition to) the minimum wage bill, and afterwards met with the state association of dental hygienists. After session I had a meeting on HB 1, which provides for improved reporting of sexual assaults on college campuses. On Friday morning I attended the last scheduled meeting in Dover of the end of life workgroup, then taped two Comcast Newsmakers sessions, and finally met with a local daycare provider who is concerned with a new piece of legislation (HB 240). On Saturday the 19th I volunteered at and participated in the Beau Biden Memorial Trail Run.

On Monday the 21st I met with a representative of a state association of insurance professionals, then attended the annual meeting of the Jenney’s Run community, and then attended the caucus meeting at which our district selected our delegates to the state Democratic Party caucus on May 7th. On Tuesday before session I attended the Delaware Manufacturers conference in Dover, and then attended the Kids Caucus, which focused on Juvenile Justice issues including expungement of criminal convictions. On Wednesday the 23rd before session I toured the Plummer Community Correctional facility in Wilmington, which houses low-risk inmates and those who are preparing to be released at the end of their sentences. After session on Wednesday I attended an event with the DE Association of Adult/Community Educators, and met two women who will have earned their GEDs in June. On Thursday I attended a luncheon reception with the American Turkish Friendship Association, which has a facility in our district, and afterwards attended a meeting on a proposed bill affecting 90-day prescriptions, and after that met with the director of the Early Learning department which administers the STARS program. On Friday the 24th I had a meeting on manufactured housing and another on open space and farmland preservation. On Saturday I had another meeting on open space and farmland preservation.

On Tuesday the 15th the Senate passed HB 188, a bill I introduced to clarify the rent justification law we adopted in 2013. Also on the 15th I struck my HB 120, which would establish a Delaware Commission on Indian Heritage and Culture, at the request of one of the interested parties. On Wednesday the 16th the House Housing & Community Affairs committee, on which I serve, released SB 178, which prohibits the use of ‘source of funds’ from being used by a landlord to reject an housing applicant. This bill has incorporated significant changes from an earlier version, such that it is now acceptable to both housing advocates and landlords. The House Revenue & Finance committee, on which I serve, released SB 200, the DE Commitment to Innovation Act. I spoke, not against the bill, but against the lack of funding for the bill, and the troubling development of this being the second significant bill this year which cuts tens of millions of dollars from our state revenues without a single penny of revenues to replace this gaping hole. This bill was passed by the full House on Thursday the 17th (again despite my statement pleading for putting our money where our mouth is). On Thursday the 24th the House passed SB 32 (a bill which I co-sponsored and which I ‘floor managed’ on Thursday), which establishes a manufactured home’s value protected in bankruptcy and insolvency proceedings.


I had emails on particular piece of legislation: HB 1 (sexual assaults on campuses), SB 111 (same day voter registration), HB 283 (state construction projects), a bill to limit civil forfeitures by law enforcement, HB 253 (Earned Income Tax Credit), a new bill on prior authorization by health insurance companies, HB 254 (a bill which was tabled in committee on the 16th, and which I am striving to help proceed beyond this impasse), HB 165 (expanding paid leave after birth/adoption), HB 142 (license plates for retired professional firefighters), HB 214 (violence against nurses), a new bill on redistricting reform, HB 211 (use of shackles on juveniles), SB 39 (minimum wage increase), HB 150 (death with dignity)

I have had emails on city issues (water tower repainting), repaving prioritization and funding, and on the death of the student in Newark during St. Patrick’s Day celebrations.

I have had emails on the midwifery regulatory process and a need for a minor cleanup bill this year.

I have had emails, discussions, and meetings on manufactured housing (court decisions, meetings, legislation).

I have had emails with a family affected by insurance company rejection of treatment for their child who is a trans individual. The state Insurance Commissioner this past week issued a rule that prohibits health insurers from unlawfully discriminating against transgender individuals.

I have had emails and discussions on the housing settlement, which the Joint Finance Committee agreed to recommend on Wednesday the 16th be disbursed amongst a fairly lengthy list of specific functions, many not housing-related. I shared my frustration with this recommendation.

I have replied to constituent emails, on attacks on the solar power industry, and on identify theft.

I have had emails and discussions on helping to maintain the Newark Country Club as a country club, on the Alder Creek development, the Newark Housing Authority, the upcoming financial literacy task force, the Christina School District referendum, drainage projects in the Estates at Corner Ketch, and on the final report of the End of Life workgroup.