Daily Report for 6/16/2020

Governor's Actions

No legislation is Signed by Governor Today

New Legislation Introduced

BillCurrent StatusSponsorSynopsisTitle
HA 1 to HB 337PWBHeffernanThis Amendment aligns the method of identifying and establishing a plan to sample areas of known, suspected or likely PFAS contamination with the EPA PFAS Action Plan. 
HS 1 for HB 338CommitteeGrayThis Act promotes the expansion of licensure opportunities in Delaware while maintaining standards of competence and professionalism required for the protection of the citizens of Delaware. The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing professional licensure for engineers. It develops, administers, and scores the examinations used for engineering licensure in the United States. Most recently, NCEES has recommended that states broaden access to licensure subject to rigorous competency requirements. For example, Delaware has historically recognized EAC of ABET-accredited (Engineering Accreditation Commission of the former Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) programs as the gold standard for engineering education. NCEES has recommended that graduates of engineering programs accredited by signatories of the Washington Accord be afforded the same recognition as EAC of ABET graduates. The Washington Accord is an international agreement between bodies responsible for accrediting engineering degree programs. Signatories of the Accord mutually “recognize the substantial equivalency of participating organizations’ accreditation processes and their graduates’ preparedness to begin professional practice at the entry level.” ABET and Engineers Canada are signatories of the Accord among a total of 20 representing agencies from every continent. This Act will give holders of degrees from engineering programs accredited by Washington Accord signatories the same recognition as EAC of ABET graduates. The required engineering experience for such applicants will be four years. This Act also proposes modifications that would expand licensure comity. While many professions in Delaware use the term “reciprocity” to define the process whereby an individual licensed in one jurisdiction may become licensed in Delaware, the term “comity” is used in the licensing law for professional engineers. To promote international engineering licensure mobility, this Act provides that the Council may license an applicant who is an International Professional Engineer (IntPE), meaning that the applicant has been fully and rigorously evaluated and approved by the International Engineering Alliance (IEA). NCEES is a member of the IEA and the International Professional Engineers Agreement (IPEA). There are currently 15 other members of the IPEA including Engineers Canada. “The International Professional Engineers Agreement recognizes the substantial equivalency of standards establishing the competency of professional engineers for independent practice.” Engineers who are licensed by agencies that are members of IPEA undergo a rigorous application process for registration as IntPEs. NCEES is an IPEA member and maintains a registry of U.S. licensed engineers who have attained IntPE status. Engineers registered as IntPEs would be provided with the same eligibility for comity within the U.S. as would U.S. state-licensed engineers. This applicant will also need to present proof of five years of experience obtained after initial licensure. This Act further proposes that an applicant who has been designated as a Model Law Engineer by NCEES may be issued a license administratively on the basis that the applicant has already been vetted by the profession’s governing body. Other provisions pertaining to comity have been amended to make the Practice Act consistent with other statutes governing professional licensure. Specifically, the comity provision pertaining to licensure by experience has been revised to require five years of licensed experience rather than the current ten years. The standards for licensure by comity have been amended to ensure that the applicant has a current license in good standing from the originating jurisdiction. This Act clarifies the grounds for denial of an application to explicitly include discipline in another jurisdiction. This Act eliminates the requirement that licensees must acquire an embossing seal and allows them to choose a seal format, such as embossing, stamp or electronic. Finally, this Act strikes references to permits on the basis that compliance with temporary permit requirements is difficult for the Council to monitor. Further, as an alternative to the temporary permit, an expedited path to licensure will be available for applicants with the Model Law Engineer designation. AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 24 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO PROFESSIONAL ENGINEERS.
SB 246PassedPoorePresently, a legal process does not exist for a Delaware hospital to seek the appointment of a guardian for a non-acute patient who has been a patient at the hospital for an extended period, after having been abandoned by family. This bill authorizes a hospital to petition for a court-appointed guardian for such a patient after providing two notices to the patient, the patient's surrogate, or the patient's family if there is no surrogate, of the need to seek a guardian for the patient. AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 16 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO HEALTH AND SAFETY AND OBLIGATIONS OF HEALTH-CARE PROVIDERS FOR NON-ACUTE PATIENTS.
SB 247PassedHansenThis Act ensures that the protections put in place during the COVID-19 pandemic related to notarizations do not cease immediately upon the lifting of the COVID-19 State of Emergency, but instead continue until June 30, 2021. The Act authorizes remote notarization and witnessing by Delaware attorneys via audio-visual technology and sets forth conditions under which they can be performed. The Delaware Governmental Offices’ requirement for a wet signature is waived. The Recorder of Deeds is required to accept documents notarized and witnessed under specified procedures in the Eleventh Modification. This Act ensures that the General Assembly will have another opportunity to express its will on continuing this protection by including an internal sunset date. AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 20 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO PUBLIC PROTECTIONS DURING THE COVID-19 STATE OF EMERGENCY AND NOTARIZATION.
SB 248PassedSokolaThe purpose of the Bill is to allow for the modifications to the Disability Insurance Program for state employees that were included in the Governor’s Twelfth Modification to the COVID-19 State of Emergency to continue until December 30, 2020 in the event that the State of Emergency ends prior to that date.AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 29 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO THE DISABILITY INSURANCE PROGRAM.
HB 339CommitteeBennettOver 80% of pharmaceuticals in the United States are purchased through pharmacy benefits manager (“PBM”) networks. PBMs serve as intermediaries between health plans, pharmaceutical manufacturers and pharmacies, and PBMs establish networks for consumers to receive reimbursement for drugs. Given the scope of PBMs in the healthcare delivery system, this Act is designed to provide enhanced oversight and transparency as it relates to PBMs. Specifically, this Act does the following: (1) If a PBM denies an appeal for a reimbursement subject to maximum allowable cost pricing, requires the PBM to provide the national drug code number of wholesalers in Delaware that have the drug in stock below maximum allowable cost. (2) Authorizes a pharmacist or pharmacy to decline to dispense a prescription drug or provide a pharmacy service to an insured if the amount reimbursed by a PBM is less than the pharmacy acquisition cost. If a pharmacist declines to provide a drug or service, the pharmacist must inform the insured that the pharmacist did this because of the costs of providing the drug or service and provide the insured with a list of pharmacies in the area that may provide the drug or service. (3) Requires PBMs to provide a reasonably adequate and accessible pharmacy benefits manager network. (4) Increases transparency by requiring PBMs to provide reports to the Insurance Commissioner on network adequacy and the amount of rebates received by PBMs and distributed to insurers or insured. (5) Prohibits PBMs from engaging in certain conduct, such as spread pricing, false advertising, and reimbursing a pharmacist or pharmacy in an amount less than the PBM reimburses itself or an affiliate for the same drug or service. If a PBM engages in prohibited conduct, the Insurance Commissioner is authorized to deny, suspend, or revoke the PBM’s registration under § 3355A of Title 18 or impose penalties or take other enforcement action under § 3359A of Title 18. Finally, this Act makes technical corrections to conform existing law to the standards of the Delaware Legislative Drafting Manual.AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 18 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO PHARMACY BENEFITS MANAGERS.
HA 1 to HB 346DefeatedYearickElectors (voters) who vote in person are asked to produce identification. This amendment adds an identification requirement for the elector to vote by mail. 
SB 251PassedSturgeonThis Act ensures that the protections put in place during the COVID-19 pandemic related to marriage licenses do not cease immediately upon the lifting of the COVID-19 State of Emergency, but instead continue until June 30, 2021. This Act authorizes parties applying for a marriage license to appear together before an issuing officer via video-conference call and authorizes the issuing officer to witness the parties’ signatures on the marriage license application by video-conference call. This Act ensures that the General Assembly will have another opportunity to express its will on continuing this protection by including an internal sunset date. AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 20 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO PUBLIC PROTECTIONS DURING THE COVID-19 STATE OF EMERGENCY AND MARRIAGE LICENSES.
HA 2 to HB 346DefeatedCollinsThis amendment requires the Elections Commissioner to open and maintain all election polling places, as done for prior elections, thereby ensuring that in-person voting is not supressed by closing polling places. This ensures that voting by mail is only an alternative to, and not a replacement for, in-person voting. 

Legislation Passed By Senate

BillCurrent StatusSponsorSynopsisTitle
HB 269PassedGrayUnder the current language of Section 2.301, it is unclear what constitutes a "term" when computing term limits and determining a potential candidate's eligibility when they have previously filled a vacancy on the Council. By adding the proposed language, there will be a clear standard for determining whether a potential candidate has exceeded the two-term limit imposed by the Charter.AN ACT TO AMEND THE CHARTER OF THE TOWN OF OCEAN VIEW RELATING TO COUNCIL TERMS OF OFFICE.
HB 263 w/ HA 1PassedBentzThis Act requires that individual, group, and State employee insurance plans cap the amount an individual must pay for insulin prescriptions at $100 a month and must include at least 1 formulation of insulin on the lowest tier of the drug formulary developed and maintained by the carrier.AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 18 AND TITLE 29 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO COST SHARING IN PRESCRIPTION INSULIN DRUGS.
HB 297PassedD. ShortThis Act amends the City of Seaford's Charter (“Charter”) as follows: 1. In Section 1, to make clear that the existing exceptions to the general requirement of advertising and competitive bidding requirements are meant to excluded from both the advertising and competitive bidding requirements established in the Charter. In addition, to create a new exception to the general requirement of advertising and competitive bidding for a purchase related to a Department of Public Works or Department of Electric project in the aggregate amount of not more than $50,000. Furthermore, to provide that an advertisement for bid is not required for a purchase related to a Department of Public Works or Department of Electric project in the aggregate amount of $50,000 to $99,999. For projects that do not require an advertisement for bid, the Director of the Department of Public Works or the Department of Electric, as applicable, shall solicit competitive, written proposals from a minimum of 3 contractors. Finally, purchases related to a Department of Public Works or Department of Electric project with an aggregate amount of $100,000 or greater continue to generally require competitive bidding and advertisement of bid. 2. In Section 2, to increase the City’s borrowing limit from $2 million to $3 million and make clear that a Councilman is not personally liable for a note issued under Section 37 of the Charter. 3. Throughout the Act, to make technical corrections to conform existing law to the standards of the Delaware Legislative Drafting Manual, including as it relates to the drafting of lists, numbers, and amounts of money. This Act requires a greater than majority vote for passage because § 1 of Article IX of the Delaware Constitution requires the affirmative vote of two-thirds of the members elected to each house of the General Assembly to amend a municipal charter.AN ACT TO AMEND THE CHARTER OF THE CITY OF SEAFORD RELATING TO FISCAL PROCEDURES.
HB 301SignedBentzThis Act repeals a provision in the State Employees’ Pension Plan that included participants in the Division for the Visually Impaired’s (“DVI”) Business Enterprise Program (“BEP”) in the State pension plan. BEP participants are meant to be independent blind entrepreneurs operating their own vending facilities in federal and state properties, as authorized by the Randolph-Sheppard Act (20 U.S.C. § 107 et seq.). DVI recruits, trains, licenses, and places individuals who are blind as BEP vending facility operators on state or federal properties. Participation in BEP is under permit or contract. Participants are not State employees; including them in the State Pension Plan or payroll system does not comply with the Randolph-Sheppard Act. This Act is a result of the Joint Legislative Oversight and Sunset Committee's 2019 review of and task force on the Division for the Visually Impaired. The Rehabilitation Services Administration, the federal agency that monitors BEP, recommended removing blind vendors from all state pension and payroll systems. Once enacted, this Act takes effect as of January 1, 2020. DVI removed BEP vendors from the State’s payroll system as of January 1, 2020. New applications for BEP are not pending as of the date this legislation is released.AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 29 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO THE STATE EMPLOYEES' PENSION PLAN.
HB 331PassedD. ShortThis bill deletes an unnecessary restriction relating to amending the Sussex County budget. No similar provision is applicable to the Kent or New Castle County budget process.AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 9 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO SUSSEX COUNTY GOVERNMENT.
HB 334PassedBushSection 1 of the Act addresses statutes under Chapter 33 of Title 12 and (i) amends section 3330 by adding subsections (c) and (d)—to make explicit in subsection (a) of section 3330 the applicability dates that were intended to be carried over from the applicability dates of the pre-2018 version of section 213 of Title 12 when, in 2018, section 213 was re-codified as subsection (a) of section 3330, and to provide a corresponding clarification of the applicability dates of subsection (b) of section 3330; (ii) amends section 3338 to specify that, consistent with the Uniform Trust Code, when a trustor is a party to a nonjudicial settlement agreement, then unless the transfer in trust is an incomplete gift for federal gift tax purposes, the trustor may not represent and bind any beneficiary other than the trustor, and—if the nonjudicial settlement agreement alters any beneficial interest in the trust—all of the trust’s beneficiaries must be parties to the agreement; (iii) amends section 3342 to parallel the changes to section 3338 under this Act—that is, to specify that, consistent with the Uniform Trust Code, unless the transfer in trust is an incomplete gift for federal gift tax purposes, a trustor, a guardian of a trustor, or an agent of a trustor under a power of attorney may not represent and bind any beneficiary other than the trustor with respect to a modification under section 3342, and to make it more clear that all of the trust’s beneficiaries must be parties to the modification; and (iv) amends the provisions of section 3343, to make subsection (a) more clear, to make section 3343’s provisions with respect to section 3313A more clear, to add within new subsection (c)(2) of section 3343 a provision allowing a trustee now excluded from exercising certain powers to be released with respect to the past exercise of such powers as though such trustee were being removed, and by adding a provision to section 3343 that an existing trustee is entitled to 30 days’ notice before changes under section 3343 become effective with respect to the existing trustee’s duties, unless the existing trustee waives the notice period. Section 2 of the Act addresses statutes under Chapter 35 of Title 12 and (i) removes a superfluous word in section 3528; and (ii) amends subsection (a)(2) of section 3585 to make it clear that the report procedure described in that subsection may be used while the trustee is in the process of resigning (and not just after completion of the act of resignation or the effective date of a resignation)—but also conditions the use of the procedure upon the resigning or resigned trustee’s transferring assets to the appropriate successor in interest within a reasonable period of time after expiration of the period within which interested parties may file an action against the trustee under subsection (a)(2), and further provides in subsection (e) that certain actions are not barred against a trustee for administration of assets after the expiration of periods under section 3585. Section 3 of the Act amends Chapter 47 of Title 12 (the Uniform Prudent Management of Institutional Funds Act) to make it clear within section 4703 that sustainable investment strategies aligning with the charitable purposes of the institution are authorized in managing the institution’s funds (thereby corresponding to recent similar amendments to sections 3302 and 3303 of Title 12). Section 4 of the Act provides effective dates.AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 12 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO DECEDENTS’ ESTATES AND FIDUCIARY RELATIONS.
HB 335PassedBushThis Act amends Delaware’s probate code by adding a new section to provide restricted access to a decedent’s safe deposit box located in a financial institution and held in the decedent’s sole name, for the limited purpose of retrieving the decedent’s last will and declaration of last remains. AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 12 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO RESTRICTED ACCESS TO SAFE DEPOSIT BOXES FOR RETRIEVAL OF DECEDENT’S LAST WILL AND DECLARATION OF LAST REMAINS.

Legislation Passed By House of Representatives

No Legislation Passed By House

Senate Committee Assignments

No Senate Committee Assignments

House Committee Assignments

Committee
Administration
Economic Development/Banking/Insurance & Commerce
Health & Human Development
Sunset Committee (Policy Analysis & Government Accountability)
Transportation/Land Use and Infrastructure

Senate Committee Report

No Senate Committee Report

House Committee Report

No House Committee Report

Senate Defeated Legislation

No Senate Defeated Legislation

House Defeated Legislation

No House Defeated Legislation

Nominations Enacted upon by the Senate

No Records