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DNREC Sediment and Stormwater Program Meeting Minutes

The agenda, meeting notes and presentation from yesterday’s RAC meeting have been posted on our website:
http://www.swc.dnrec.delaware.gov/Drainage/Pages/RegRevisions.aspx
Individual links are provided under the RAC Meeting Summaries heading.

Multigeneration housing will require planning now

February 23, 2010 – Delaware Online

If a new report about family living is accurate, real estate density disputes are a looming crisis for the housing market.

A Coldwell Banker real estate survey found that unintended family “reunions” under one roof are becoming a trend tied to near double-digit joblessness and lifestyle issues affected by the
recession.

In the last year, 37 percent of Coldwell sales professionals noted an increase in buyers seeking
homes to accommodate more than one generation.

Almost 70 percent believe economic conditions may cause greater demand for multi-generational homes in their market during the next year. Expect the current census to confirm the new reality. In 2000, only 3.9 million such families were recorded.

Saving money is not the only incentive. In living under one roof, two- or three-generation families have more flexible schedules, quality time and can better juggle child care and elder care.

But zoning boards and single-family homeowners will be paying more attention to the impact on
municipal resources.

Additional sewer and water services, as well as parking and public transportation, will be needed. Disputes over lot sizes to accommodate this new demand only add to the headaches involved in land-use planning.

Antectodal surveys like these are a wake-up call to local governments to prepare now for what is shaping up to be a fundamental change in how American families choose to co-exist.

Info on Impact Fees Available

The spending of money to construct capital facilities is one of the most important and powerful means of implementing a local comprehensive plan.
The timing, location, intensity, and quality of growth is closely linked to and indeed controlled by decisions affecting the construction of essential public infrastructure and the capacity of a community to fund a capital improvement program. Another important consideration for plan implementation is the manner in which funds are raised for infrastructure development. The sharing of the burden of infrastructure financing between established land uses and new development can affect housing affordability, economic development efforts, levels of public services, and competition for tax base with adjoining jurisdictions. Shifting from traditional broad-based funding solutions to development exaction can raise difficult and complex questions of fairness and legality.

Please go to our Impact Fee Resources page on hbade.org for more valuable tools and information.

2-10 Home Buyers Warranty® Gift Will Help Adapt Homes For Injured Veterans

Las Vegas, NV – As a means of launching its year-long 30th anniversary celebration, 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty® (2-10 HBW®) has announced a $10,000 donation to Homes for Our Troops, which builds specially equipped homes for severely injured veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

“We’re humbly grateful for the opportunity to help veterans and their families cope with life-changing injuries our Armed Forces members incurred while protecting our freedom,” said Mark Lewis, president of 2-10 HBW’s New Home Division.

“Helping fund construction and renovation projects for Homes for Our Troops during our anniversary year is in line with 2-10 HBW’s mission to support home builders, remodelers, real estate professionals, lenders and all of their  homebuyers,” Lewis said on Jan. 20, in announcing the donation at the 2010 International Builders’ Show® in Las Vegas, NV.

Homes for Our Troops has built specially designed homes for severely injured veterans in 23 states and has sites under way in four more. Using mostly donated materials and labor, the Massachusetts-based nonprofit organization has built and equipped more than 50 homes for needy veterans.

“We’re extremely appreciative to 2-10 HBW for their generosity,” said John Gonsalves, a general contractor who founded Homes for Our Troops in 2004. “When a company makes a donation like this, it makes a huge impact and it serves as an example of being a good steward, a good community citizen.”

2-10 Home Buyers Warranty is the premier provider of new home warranty protection and leads the nation by providing warranties on over 3 million homes through 10,000 builders in 48 states and the District of Columbia.  The warranty insurer for the 2-10 HBW program has paid approximately $197.5 million in claims on behalf of builders since its inception.  The Denver-based company provides an extensive array of innovative warranty products, programs and services to meet the needs of its members and their homebuyers– including free sales support materials to help builders sell more homes.

Photos/cutlines: https://veuxmarketing.sharefile.com/d-sa0611da08644b709

For more information on:

2-10 HBW Anniversary Celebration:  www.2-10Celebrates30.com

2-10 HBW Warranty Products, Programs and Services:   www.2-10.com

How to Donate or Volunteer:  www.homesforourtroops.org

Middletown Code Training Seminar Postponed!!

Due to the weather and road conditions, the Monday morning IECC code seminar is being postponed until Thursday or Friday this week, depending on availability of the meeting space at Middletown.
Any questions, email me at jen@hbade.org or call at 302-747-6111.

Obama Says Senate May Drop Cap and Trade, Pass Energy-Only Bill

By DARREN SAMUELSOHN of ClimateWire
Published: February 3, 2010

President Obama acknowledged yesterday that the Senate may pass an energy bill this year without the cap-and-trade component he has long put at the center of his environmental agenda.

Green Inc

A blog about energy, the environment and the bottom line.

Speaking at a town hall meeting in Nashua, N.H., Obama repeated his call for a price on greenhouse gas emissions but said he recognized that such an approach may not have the votes to make it into law.

“The only thing I would say about it is this: We may be able to separate these things out,” Obama said. “And it’s conceivable that that’s where the Senate ends up. But the concept of incentivizing clean energy so that it’s the cheaper, more effective kind of energy is one that is proven to work and is actually a market-based approach.”

Senate moderates from both parties are pushing Obama to accept an energy-only approach without putting a price on carbon emissions the way the House-passed bill (H.R. 2454 (pdf)) does, including Agriculture Chairwoman Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.), Budget Chairman Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), and Sens. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.) and Judd Gregg (R-N.H.).

“I think cap and trade has a long road here obviously,” Gregg said yesterday. “And there’s a lot of good initiatives on energy policy that are on a shorter track and will hopefully be pursued aggressively.

“I think it’s more logical to focus on those things we can do in the short term,” Gregg added.

Dorgan on Monday said he wants the Senate to pass the Energy and Natural Resources Committee bill (S. 1462 (pdf)) that establishes a nationwide renewable electricity standard, along with a raft of other energy incentives, including a provision that could bring oil and gas rigs closer to Florida’s Gulf Coast.

“If you ask somebody who believes fervently in cap and trade and a lower carbon future, ‘What would you specifically do to achieve that?’ they’d talk about the very things we’ve put in this energy bill,” Dorgan said.

Obama’s comments on the Senate climate and energy bill came in response to a question from an audience member — former Rep. Richard “Dick” Swett (D-N.H.) — who had asked about the prospect of tackling U.S. energy dependence “without having to do cap and trade and other aspects with environmental controls that are going to have negative impacts on our economy.”

Obama said that his energy agenda is centered on promoting energy efficiency and clean energy technologies, including renewables, nuclear power and carbon capture and storage at coal-fired power plants. Cap and trade also needs to be in the mix in order to promote cleaner forms of energy at the lowest cost to industry, Obama said.

Going for an energy bill alone, Obama said, is equal to saying, “let’s do the fun stuff before we do the hard stuff.”

“And so the question then is: Does it make sense for us to start pricing in the fact that this thing is really bad for the environment?” Obama added. “And if we do, then can we do it in a way that doesn’t involve some big bureaucracy in a control-and-command system, but just says, look, we’re just going to — there’s going to be a price to pollution. And then everybody can adapt and decide which are the — which are the best energies.”

A White House spokesman said Obama’s remarks about the Senate debate were only an “observation.”

“The president made his commitment to comprehensive energy and climate change legislation clear in last week’s State of the Union address,” the spokesman said. “Nothing has changed.”

Advocates of a broad Senate climate bill — including the cap-and-trade provisions — also were quick to downplay the president’s remarks.

“This is not a signal; this is President Obama explaining the imperative for a price on global warming pollution to drive clean energy investments,” said Dan Weiss, a senior fellow at the left-leaning Center for American Progress. “He is making the case that an energy-only bill won’t be enough to drive investment.”

“While today he’s acknowledged that some want to go the path of least resistance, he made equally clear that’s not his administration’s position,” said Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), the lead author of the Senate climate and energy effort.

Kerry said that he is getting closer to producing legislation with a limit on greenhouse gas emissions with Sens. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) — even if the exact details remain a work in progress.

“It’s accurate that we’re still working on precisely what the carbon pricing mechanism and what shape it will take,” Kerry said yesterday. “It might be a hybrid. It might be one component. There may be some compromise. We have to look at that very closely. We know we have to price carbon, and that’s essential.”

Kerry, Graham and Lieberman are circulating text on a number of key issues, Kerry said. “I think we’ve moved very significantly on the nuclear piece, on the energy title itself, on the alternative renewables, on natural gas, on some of the offset pieces,” he said. “I think we’re making a lot of progress.”

While Kerry repeatedly declined to provide specifics, he confirmed that the proposal would include tax incentives and loan guarantees for the nuclear power industry.

“I don’t want to start throwing out little nibbles and pieces of one title or another,” Kerry said. “I don’t think it serves us well. I think we need to treat this as a package. Nothing’s agreed to until we’ve got everything agreed to.”

Senate aides said this week that they do not expect complete details of the Kerry-Graham-Lieberman package to emerge until next month at the earliest. After that, U.S. EPA would take about four weeks to run modeling on the proposal, followed by another week of interagency review before it is ready for the floor.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said yesterday he is waiting for Kerry and Graham “to come up with a package on that, a bipartisan package, and I hope they do it soon.”

Asked if he still was aiming for a floor debate this spring, Reid replied, “Yeah, I hope so.”

Copyright 2010 E&E Publishing. All Rights Reserved.

New Castle County executive files as candidate for Delaware’s open U.S. Senate seat – Dover, DE – Dover Post

New Castle County executive files as candidate for Delaware’s open U.S. Senate seat – Dover, DE – Dover Post

Posted using ShareThis

Sussex County Council Turns to Land-Use Ordinances

New measures needed to implement county plan

By Ron MacArthur

With two years remaining before a new comprehensive land-use plan update must be passed, Sussex County officials have acted on only seven of the 23 proposed ordinances in the current plan.  Read More…

Land-use plan to-do list
The following is a quick read on ordinances considered part of the Sussex County comprehensive land-use plan as provided to county officials by Paul Driscoll, consultant with Urban Research and Development Corp. in Bethlehem, Pa. Driscoll, who helped write the plan, is also assisting to draft new ordinances.

Not needed – Wildlife habitat protection, green stormwater management and agricultural zoning district ordinances, all of which are covered under existing county or state regulations and programs.

May not be needed – Driscoll said three proposed ordinances are covered, at least in part, in existing ordinances: transfer of development rights, traditional neighborhood development regulations and requirements for recreation facilities and trails in larger developments

Already implemented – Wellhead protection; forested buffers; redefined development standards; revised sign regulations; open space definition; moderately priced housing program; and regulations outlining parameters for public sewer providers in county service areas.

Under review – Removing barriers to manufactured housing. Revisions include more relaxed setback requirements for accessory sheds, negating the need for variances and surveys.

High priority – Formation of an agricultural business zone and added environmental protection in the Environmentally Sensitive Developing Overlay Area.

Procedural refinement – Driscoll recommends the proposed demolition of historic structures ordinance become an administrative procedure and not an ordinance.

Governor’s speech focuses on jobs

Smaller government, less
red tape key to recovery

Governor’s speech focuses on jobs

In his annual state of the state address, Gov. Jack Markell said he envisions restoring the state’s promise and prosperity.
“While Delaware has weathered more difficult challenges, this was and still is a time to try our souls,” he said. “Navigating through any storm requires unwavering focus, clear purpose and bold action,” he said.Markell addressed the General Assembly Thursday, Jan. 21, saying jobs – retaining them and drawing them to Delaware – and overcoming budget deficits – is the key to economic recovery in his second address since being elected to office in 2008.  more…

Cape Gazette Legislative Wrap-up 2-4-2010

Legislative Wrap Up
By Kevin Spence

 Last week, Gov. Jack Markell recommended a balanced $3.2 billion budget that includes state-agency cuts and new pension plans for new state hires, striving to close a $254 million budget gap. The proposed budget relies on revenue from table games, which are permitted under a bill that passed in the House Jan. 21 and the Senate Thursday, Jan. 28. Markell signed the bill the same day and a $40 million revenue booster was counted among anticipated revenues in the proposed 2011 budget. The Legislature will now break until Tuesday, March 16. Meanwhile, in February, the 12-member Joint Finance Committee is holding public hearings until the General Assembly reconvenes.  more…

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