Category Archives: State Senate

Delaware Senate Passes Opt-out Bill With Amendments

By: Wolf von Baumgart, Staff Writer The Delaware State Senate, yesterday, has passed HB 50, legislation that legally codifies the existing rights of parents to have their children opt out of standardized state educational testing, by a margin of 14 to 7 with two amendments. SA 1 to HB 50 (passed 11 to 9 with 1 absent) would also allow parents to opt out of district-wide assessments was sponsored by Senate Education Committee Chairman, David Sokola (D-Dist.8, Newark). Additionally, SA 2 to HB 50 (passed 13 to 3 with 5 not voting) that would enable high school juniors to opt out of state testing, was sponsored by Senator Bryan Townsend (D-Dist.11, Newark). The amendments drew criticisms from HB 50’s primary sponsor, State Representative, John A. Kowalko (D-Dist. 25, Newark South) who stated that the amendments, in his opinion, were designed to kill the bill. For the record, Senator Read more

HB 140 is Designed to Raise Motor Vehicle Fees

In a move to raise more revenue for Delaware’s Transportation Trust Fund (TTF), some state legislators have sponsored HB 140, designed to raise a set of 14 separate motor vehicle documentation fees. Democrat Representatives Peter Schwartzkopf (Dist.14), Valerie Longhurst (Dist.15), John J. Viola (Dist. 26), S. Quinton Johnson (Dist. 8) and Edward S. Osienski (Dist. 24) as well as Senators Patricia M. Blevins (Dist.7), David B. McBride (Dist. 13), Margaret Rose Henry (Dist.2) with David P. Sokola (Dist. 8) are primary sponsors. Estimated to cost Delaware drivers an additional $ 24 million annually, the increase is projected to raise an additional $12.5 million for the TTF. Under the terms of HB 140, the motor vehicle document fee (imposed on new cars sold in Delaware) would rise from 3.75 percent to 4.25 percent, the fee for driver's licenses record sales would increase from $15 Read more

House Republican Leaders Set The Record Straight

Representatives Cathcart and Short swing back: Rep. Schwartzkopf took unjustified jab at House Republicans Dick Cathcart and Dan Short Recently, State House Majority Leader Pete Schwartzkopf wrote a column in which he used one arm to pat House Democrats on the back while using the other to take an undeserved swipe at House Republicans. We take issue with what he said, but more so with what he omitted. For instance, the column credited House Democrats for enacting legislation that bars discrimination based on sexual orientation. Conveniently forgotten was that similar legislation cleared the House during the 141st, 142nd and 143rd General Assembly sessions. On all three occasions, the House was controlled by Republicans and the legislation was blocked in the Democrat-controlled Senate. Another accomplishment attributed to House Democrats was the enactment of House Bill 1, Read more

Polly Wanna Participate Now?

The Sussex Countian is reporting that Polly Adams has decided to participate in the Sussex League of Women Voter's forum on July 30th at the County Council Chambers on the circle in Georgetown: Democratic State Senate candidate Polly Adams Mervine confirmed on Monday that she will take part in a Thursday candidate’s forum sponsored by the League of Women Voters.... “Thursday will be a very tough day. Dad was the rock of our family and the fair was a big part of his life,” Mervine said. “But so was serving the people of the 19th District and I think he’d want me at this forum explaining how I plan to carry on that commitment to service.” I guess her Dad wouldn't have wanted her at the Crossroads Community Church forum in her hometown of Bridgeville in between Bridgeville and Georgetown. Meanwhile another blog is reporting that Sweet Polly Purebred had a Read more

UPDATE: Polly Ever Wanna Face The Voters?

It appears that the plot may be thickening when it comes to the alleged candidacy of Polly Adams Mervine Polly Mervine Adams. When we last left the alleged candidate, she apparently tried to get Senator Bob Venables to stand in for her at tonight's forum at Crossroads Community Church in her hometown of Bridgeville, got shot down, and was planning on showing up just to make an opening statement, then bailing before she actually had to answer any questions so she could go to what is looking like a fundraiser. Meanwhile, the rumors are still a-swirling that Ms. Adams' campaign isn't responding to outreach attempts from a certain talk radio station that has a heck of a lot of listeners in the 19th. And to top all of that off with a tiara, I have learned that as of right now, there is only one other live debate/forum between tonight and the special election in the works, and Read more

Polly Wanna Stand-in?

I've heard from multiple sources that Polly Adams Mervine, a faux painter (that's someone who paints stuff with sponges or stencils) who's vying for her deceased father's state senate seat on a platform of blatant nepotism, wanted to have Senator Bob Venables stand in for her at a debate in her hometown of Bridgeville. Yeah, you read that right, Senator Bob Venables. What better way to prove you're ready to step in as a state senator during precarious times then having another state senator answer questions for you in a debate. But alas, my sources tell me that the venue, Crossroads Community Church, rejected the stand-in idea so Mervine will be bailing on the debate part of tomorrow night's debate. Don't get me wrong, apparently Mervine is going to be there, she's just not going to answer any questions. Instead, she's showing up to give an opening statement, giving her best Read more

1st Take on 19th Senatorial

The race for the Thurman Adams Senate seat is officially joined now that the date of the Special Election has been set for August 3rd. On first take it would appear the Republicans hold the advantage nominating a known political quantity in Joe Booth whose solid conservative credentials fit the district like a glove. The response of most of the political class to the Democrat nominee was “Eddy who?" I hate to disappoint my Republican friends but this race will be no slam-dunk. We Republicans will have to bring our A game. Representative Joe Booth begins with better name recognition and a reputation as the kind of straight shooter that goes over well in Sussex. The Democrats however, hold certain advantages that could swing a close race. First is the candidate himself. Mr. Parker is thoughtful and articulate. He can make the favorable one on one impression that is so important in Read more

God Bless Thurmond Adams and Company

Senator Adams understood that imposing needless regulation on business in this economy is unwise and so did 3 other senators. HB 5, the Lawyers Right to Sue More, bill went down to defeat after a fair vote and an open public hearing today. The defeat of HB 5 in a public vote undermines the whine factor of supporters who are trying to rush this bill through with little public debate and scrutiny by bypassing the committee process. HB 5 is a sham. It has no provisions to protect auxiliary operations of religious institutions such as accommodations, hall rentals, and camps from being forced to participate in the activities preformed by others that they object to. In spite of a weak employment exemption which may or may not apply to religious schools and daycares. there was none whatsoever in the public accommodation side of the ledger. Small businesses would have to explain Read more

Our Blue Hens have come home to …. is the link for a common sense approach for restructuring state government. Senator Colin Bonini points out that if we continued the DuPont Castle budgets the state government would have a 2.1 Billion dollar budget today and not well over 3.2 Billion dollars with a 750 million dollar short fall. We would have a surplus. 16 years of Democrat governors have spent us into difficulty according to Senator Bonini. Here is his idea to get us back on track. I contacted Senator Bonini, this past Friday. He was thrilled with the response that he has received so far. There seems to be an appetite for the ideas of limited, transparent, and more effective government. He plans to take his case to the people to build a public base to save our state from fiscal decline. He warned about this approaching problem as early as the year 2000 and voted against state budget after Read more

True Intentions

There are two bills stirring some measure of controversy in the General Assembly right now. One shouldn't be controversial at all, Senate Bill 27 which is the Marriage Protection Act. The other is House Bill 5 which is the non discrimination based on Sexual Orientation. Both bills seem to be on the fast track for votes today in their respective house. Both bills seem to have majority support. The Marriage Protection Act has been an amendment attached which will clarifies the language so that no confusion would exist regarding civil unions (which don't exist). The true intentions of the sponsors and supporters like myself are clear with the amendment--it is about marriage. There is now no excuse for those who say that they oppose same sex marriage. I say to those Senators you either support the bill or you are disconnected from your words and the reality of your actions. Now your Read more

Governor Minner vetoes SB 245 which limited government snatching of your property

Governor Minner vetoed the bipartisan SB 245. Delaware on line reported the following: Gov. Ruth Ann Minner announced today she is vetoing legislation that would have redefined “public use” in the eminent domain law and made it harder for government agencies to take private land. The Legislature passed Senate Bill 245 on June 12, after months of negotiations between parities involved in the issue. The legislation would have only allowed government agencies to take private land if it was intended for "public use" and added that economic development did not meet the definition of "public." It also would have tightened the definition of blighted, adding it must be a threat to public health and safety. I am so glad we have the Governor looking out for the interests of the powerful.  If we didn't have people like her, the average citizen might be able to sneak a break in once in a while.  Read more