you're reading...
News and Info

Delaware General Assembly Recap

We would like to thank every HBADE member of the Legislative Committee who has worked so hard on our issues throughout the year and those that attended last Sunday, including the members who came out and amended a concurrent resolution late Sunday night that would not have included HBADE.

2013-06-30 21.39.55
We want to share an end-of-session Legislative Brief for the first half of the 147th (2013) General Assembly as legislators wrap up and head back to their districts for the summer. Having been a very eventful year, there is much to look back on and still more to anticipate after the recess.

  • Under a newly-elected Speaker of the House and Senator Pro Tempore, the legislature was forced to address a wide array of issues.  For much of the year, legislators from both chambers were monopolized by social issues addressing gay marriage, transgender equality, gun control, voting rights and the death penalty. Due, in part, to bipartisan cohesiveness in Dover this year, both sides worked together to not only develop and pass a balanced budget but also put differences aside on some      very controversial topics.
  • One major legislative action in budget discussions over the past six months was the extension of sunset provisions for several 2009 tax increases that were set to expire this year. In March, House leaders introduced four revenue bills that would continue to roll back 2009 rate increases while closing a projected budget shortfall for next year. The package was part of Governor Markell’s fiscal 2014 budget      proposal introduced in January. The bills, all of which have been signed by Governor Markell, are expected to generate $27.9 million in revenue for fiscal 2014 and $156.7 million for fiscal 2015.
  • The Legislature also faced tough questions about slot machines in private, nonprofit clubs like VFW and American Legion halls; and in the wake of recent mass shootings, they fervently addressed gun      control and mental health issues. Although it’s not uncommon for a legislature to tackle social issues in a non-election year, it is atypical to see so many of the issues already moved through both chambers and signed by the Governor.

Any bills not passed by both chambers by June 30th will shift into the second half of the 147th General Assembly, beginning January 2014. We expect to see most of the remaining bills carry over, so this will be a critical time for us. Over the next several months, we must continue to monitor the legislative process and maintain the strong relationships we have with our allies in the General Assembly. And considering that next year is an election year, our efforts will mean that much more in Dover.

We made great strides building additional allies this year, and for the first time, we were not playing defense on legislation heading into June 30th. As mentioned, HCR 34 passed the Senate late last night (June 30/early July 1). Many allies in the House stood up to put forth an amendment to include our industry (along with Realtors, Associated Builders and Contractors, and the Building Trades Association). The sponsor has agreed to allow an amendment in early January to add us to the working group. We will continue to talk with our allies and partners to see that the amendment is pre-filed when we return in January.

A recap of the specific bills we dealt with are as follows:

SCR 34 –Sponsors Sen. McDowell (Sen. McBride & Rep. Kowalko)

Introduced date – 6/30/13

Synopsis: This resolution creates a “Green and Better Building Advisory Committee.”

Status Update: Passed by both Chambers. While HBADE will not be added on now as a member of the Advisory committee, a friendly amendment to the legislation will be added in January to add the HBADE, the Realtors and the ABC.

HB 196  – Sponsors Q. Johnson (McDowell)

Introduced date – 6/19/13

Synopsis: This bill prohibits housing discrimination based on source of income by adding “source of income” as a protected class under the Delaware Fair Housing Act and the Landlord Tenant Code.

Status Update: Introduced and Assigned to Housing & Community Affairs Committee in House, carries over into January. Moving forward, need to work with stakeholders close to bill.

SB 139 – Sponsors Hall-Long (Barbieri)

Introduced date – 6/15/13

Synopsis: To reduce lead poisoning in Delaware, this Act requires the Department to establish regulations for lead-based paint activities performed by renovators and dust-wipe technicians in; and provides administrative authority to seek criminal penalties for continuing violations and bring civil action to collect assessed penalties in the event of nonpayment.  Amended to allow that if Federal regulations re-institute the opt-out provision, that Delaware regulations will automatically include same.

Status update: Passed by both Chambers, needs Governor’s signature

HB 115 – Sponsor Rep. Scott

Introduced date 5/16/13

Synopsis – This bill provides that causes of actions regarding the performance or furnishing of land surveys and the creation or furnishing of survey products must be brought within 6 years or 3 years after the discovery of an error or omission, whichever occurs first. Causes of actions based upon gross negligence are not covered by this section.

Update status – Assigned to HOUSE Economic Development/Banking/Insurance/Commerce Committee

SB 93 – Sponsors Sen. Bushweller (Rep. Scott)

Introduced date 5/16/13

Synopsis: This bill creates a process for Kent County to establish a stormwater maintenance district and for the collection and use of stormwater maintenance fees.

Status: Passed by both Chambers, needs Governor’s signature

SB 78
SA 1 Placed on bill – Sponsors Sen McBride (Rep. Heffernan & Rep. Q. Johnson)

Introduced date: 5/9/13

Synopsis: This legislation establishes a Wetlands Advisory Committee to develop comprehensive recommendations for conserving and restoring non-tidal wetlands in Delaware, including evaluating national best practices and standards, evaluating incentive-based programs, and reviewing state and federal wetland permitting processes to identify opportunities to improve efficiency and eliminate redundancy. The Secretary will provide a final report of recommendations to the General Assembly no later than December 31, 2014.  HBADE is named as a member of the advisory Committee.

Status: Passed by both Chambers, needs Governor’s signature

About HBA of Delaware

HBA/DE has been an integral part of the growth and economic development of the State of Delaware since 1947. HBA/DE was founded as a non-profit state affiliate of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) representing home builders and other businesses directly related to Delaware's Home Building Industry. Consisting of Builders, Remodelers and a group of diversified associate members, the Home Builders Association of Delaware strives to protect and preserve housing as a symbol of America. www.hbade.org

Discussion

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

back to HBADE Website

RSS NAHB Now

  • Creating Your Tax Credit Compliance Calendar September 20, 2017
    Housing Credit Certified Professionals and anyone involved in tax credit compliance for multi-unit housing will learn to plan ahead and take control of their tax credit deadlines with the tools offered in this upcoming webinar.
    NAHB Now
  • 5 Women on the Rise September 20, 2017
    During NAHB's Professional Women in Building Week, we're raising the visibility of women in the home building industry. This includes both the trailblazers who have led the way and those who are boldly following in their footsteps. 
    NAHB Now
  • Association Excellence Awards Honor Best HBA Operations September 20, 2017
    We continue to honor the winners of this year's Association Excellence Awards by highlighting the HBA Operations pillar, which recognizes the most effective programs or services that have helped improve or enhance operations of the association, in four distinct categories.
    NAHB Now
%d bloggers like this: