Kowalko Schwartzkopf

2022 Rewind: Kowalko says House Speaker killed IG bill

Charlie Megginson Government, Headlines

This story was originally published in July 2022. An outgoing Democratic member of the Delaware House of Representatives says House Speaker Pete Schwartzkopf blocked his bill to create an office of the inspector general.  Rep. John Kowalko, D-Newark, said the move was typical of Schwartzkopf’s leadership style. That leadership style can be characterized by “coercion, intimidation, incentivizing and reward,” Kowalko …

Caucus votes for new leadership

Democrats pick (not so) new caucus leaders

Charlie Megginson Government, Headlines

Delaware House and Senate Democrats are sticking with the status quo in the next General Assembly. Rep. Pete Schwartzkopf, D-Rehoboth Beach, was re-elected Speaker of the House during a caucus meeting Saturday after serving in that position since 2013. Schwartzkopf faced a challenge from Rep. Paul Baumbach, D-Newark. House Democrats would not release a roll call vote to Delaware LIVE …

Thursday, June 9, 2022

Legislature to reconvene to tackle Medicare Advantage

Charlie Megginson Government, Headlines

In response to protests by state government retirees who say they were left in the dark over a significant change to their health insurance, the General Assembly unveiled a bill Monday aimed at creating additional oversight. The House of Representatives and Senate will hold a special session in Dover on Oct. 26 to debate and vote on the bill. Pensioners …

Government Transparency Delaware FOIA

Transparency advocates: Update FOIA for 21st century

Charlie Megginson Government, Headlines

Government transparency advocates say there’s no reason in 2022 that public information should be as difficult to access as it is in Delaware. “At the root of democracy in Delaware and in the United States is citizens’ access to government information — and not just access, but easy access,” said Charlie Copeland, co-director of the Caesar Rodney Institute’s Center for …

Realty transfer tax

Delaware’s realty transfer tax to remain highest in nation

Charlie Megginson Headlines, Government

Delaware will remain the state with the highest realty transfer tax in the nation after a bill to decrease the tax died in the General Assembly.  Introduced by Rep. Bill Bush, D-Dover, House Bill 358 would have cut the tax from 4% of a property’s sale price to 3% — the level it was at prior to 2017 when the …

Transparency advocates push for campaign finance reform

Transparency advocates push for campaign finance reform

Charlie Megginson Government, Headlines

With weeks to go before the first votes are cast in Delaware’s 2022 election cycle, advocates for government transparency are pushing for better campaign finance reporting. Common Cause Delaware, a nonprofit group that lobbies for open, honest and accountable government, has called for more frequent and detailed reporting of campaign funds collected when candidates run for office.  “It’s common knowledge …

McG Schwartz

House speaker refuses to consider McGuiness removal

Charlie Megginson Government, Headlines

The Delaware Senate on Monday passed a resolution to begin a process Democratic leadership hopes will result in the removal of one of their own: State Auditor Kathleen McGuiness. Every Republican voted against the measure, putting them in line with House Speaker Pete Schwartzkopf, D-Rehoboth, who said he has “no intention of calling the House into session to consider this …

Kowalko Schwartzkopf

Kowalko: House Speaker killed inspector general bill

Charlie Megginson Government, Headlines

An outgoing Democratic member of the Delaware House of Representatives says House Speaker Pete Schwartzkopf blocked his bill to create an office of the inspector general.  Rep. John Kowalko, D-Newark, said the move was typical of Schwartzkopf’s leadership style. That leadership style can be characterized by “coercion, intimidation, incentivizing and reward,” Kowalko said, and the inspector general bill is just …

Leg Hall

House votes to ban most guns for citizens under 21

Charlie Megginson Government, Headlines

Delawareans under the age of 21 would be prohibited from purchasing, owning, possessing or controlling a firearm or ammunition under a bill passed by the House of Representatives Tuesday. The move comes just days after the House voted to ban most semi-automatic firearms. Exceptions include if the person is an active member of the armed forces or a qualified law-enforcement …

Leg Hall Night 1

General Assembly may end long-standing June 30 tradition

Charlie Megginson Government, Headlines

The Delaware House of Representatives on Thursday unanimously passed a measure aimed at ending the tradition of extending legislative business beyond midnight on June 30 of each year. Under House Bill 411, the General Assembly would only be constitutionally mandated to stay until 5 p.m. on the last day of June.  “Five o’clock becomes the new twelve o’clock, basically,” said …