Daily Report for 5/11/2022

Governor's Actions

BillCurrent StatusSponsorSynopsisTitle
SS 2 for SB 1 w/ HA 1SignedS. McBrideThis Act, the Healthy Delaware Families Act, creates a statewide paid family and medical leave insurance program. Delaware employees can access up to 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave through the State's paid leave trust fund for a qualifying event, including for the following: (1) To address a worker's own serious health condition. (2) To care for a family member with a serious health condition. (3) To bond and care for a new child. (4) To address the impact of a family member's military deployment. This Substitute to Senate Bill No. 1 differs from Senate Bill No. 1 with regard to the eligibility determination process, covered relationships, length of leave, forms of leave covered, cumulative leave, eligibility criteria, implementation timeline, appeal process, departmental powers, and not requiring participation from certain smaller businesses. This Substitute differs from Senate Substitute No. 1 to Senate Bill No. 1 by making technical corrections, clarifying intent and providing greater statutory detail with regard to appeals, coordination of benefits, definitions, private plans, and departmental powers, and providing temporary flexibility regarding implementation.AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 19 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO THE FAMILY AND MEDICAL LEAVE INSURANCE PROGRAM.

New Legislation Introduced

BillCurrent StatusSponsorSynopsisTitle
SS 1 for SB 258PassedLopezThis Act abrogates current Delaware law as it presently stands regarding available recovery for damages related to injured or deceased pets that are tortiously injured by a third party or a third party’s animal. Under current Delaware law, including cases such as Naples v. Miller, 2009 WL 1163504, (Del. Super. Ct. Apr. 30, 2009), there are substantial limitations on a pet owner’s ability to recover amounts related to the cost of veterinary bills because animals that are pets in Delaware are treated as property. This Act does not change the status of pets as property but does provide new causes of action to address tortious injury to a pet. Under current law, an owner would only be permitted to recover the fair market value of a pet, regardless of the amount of veterinary bills or expenses related to care stemming from a tortious injury that is inflicted. This Act provides that limitations on such actions apply as they would otherwise apply to actions under Delaware’s common law as it relates to negligence, gross negligence, recklessness, wanton behavior, or intentionally tortious behavior where punitive damages could presently be awarded. This Act would permit an action to be brought by a legal entity that owns an animal that suffers tortious injury, although any limitations presently existing that would apply to a legal entity bringing such a claim would apply. Finally, this Act limits the ability to bring a cause of action under this Act to persons who are lawfully in possession of their pet, pursuant to relevant state, county, or municipal limitations, thus barring actions involving unlawfully possessed animals. This substitute act differs from the original through removal of the cap on recoverable veterinary bills incurred due to a tortious injury inflicted upon a pet. This act also differs from the original through removal of the ability to recover damages related to emotional trauma suffered by a pet owner in the face of negligent, reckless, wanton, or intentional tortious injury. The other sources of relief outlined in the original act remain unaltered. This Act shall be referred to as the Izzy the Cat Act, in honor of a cat that was severely injured due to the tortious acts of a third party. Izzy’s injuries were found to be compensable during an insurance arbitration, but were limited to the “fair market value” of Izzy, which does not capture either the expense of caring for significant injuries to a pet or the emotional impact to the pet’s owner. Izzy’s story is like so many other pets who suffer tortious injury with little recourse for the humans that care for them to be truly made whole. This Act will correct these imbalances in Delaware’s laws, and serve as a deterrent to the sort of behavior that leads to the injury or death of the pets of Delaware’s residents and visitorsAN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 10 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO CIVIL ACTIONS FOR TORTIOUS INJURIES, INCLUDING DEATH, TO LAWFULLY OWNED PETS.
HA 1 to HS 1 for HB 93PassedBriggs KingThis amendment changes the effective date to August 1, 2022. 
HA 2 to HB 193StrickenD. ShortThis bill seeks to provide the State Fire Prevention Commission with the authority to hear and resolve disputes filed by members of the public or fire companies with respect to firefighting activities by individual firefighters and fire companies. The bill also authorizes the Commission and its staff to investigate fires where firefighters are injured and to issue investigative reports detailing findings and conclusions. The Commission will work with a committee of the Delaware Volunteer Firefighters Association to amend Regulation 709 with respect to listed items in this legislation. Finally, the bill provides immunity to the Commission and its staff for activity authorized by this section. 
SA 1 to HB 355PassedPooreThis Amendment removes the prohibition of the payment of administrative costs by an appropriation of the General Assembly. 
SB 266CommitteeBoniniSection 20, Article I of the Delaware Constitution guarantees the individual citizen's right to keep and bear arms for legitimate and lawful purposes such as “defense of self, family, home and State, and for hunting and recreational use.” However, not everyone engaged in business in Delaware readily accepts and honors those rights or the individual Delawarean's ability under the law to lawfully exercise those rights. This Act creates a Gun Owners' Bill of Rights that does the following: (1) Safeguards the rights of an individual or business entity from unscrupulous and discriminatory economic practices such as discriminatory pricing of products, goods, and services because the individual or business entity is a gun owner, hunter, or sportsperson. (2) Prohibits the creation, sale, or distribution of lists and information about firearms and their owners not otherwise authorized or required by law. (3) Prohibits discriminatory economic practices because of an individual's membership in hunting, shooting, or outdoor sports organizations. The rights and remedies contained within this Act for the protection of gun owners, hunters, and sportspersons are similar, if not identical, to those afforded in other consumer settings.AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 6 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO THE GUN OWNERS' BILL OF RIGHTS.
SB 296CommitteeGayThis bill raises the threshold for licensed property appraisers so that they may appraise residential units valued at $400,000.00 or less as a way to meet market demand. It also changes the requirements for licensure, such that property appraisers must file annual certificates but only renew their registrations every other year.AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 24 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO PROFESSIONS AND OCCUPATIONS.

Legislation Passed By Senate

BillCurrent StatusSponsorSynopsisTitle
HS 1 for HB 168PassedBushThis bill would allow insurance companies to invest in mortgages on long-term leaseholds in the jurisdictions approved by the Department of Insurance. It is the intent of the Department of Insurance that the first approved jurisdiction be the United Kingdom. In the United Kingdom real estate typically is held not in fee simple (like the US) but long-term land leases. Thirty three other states including Maryland, New Jersey, and New York have similar statues. AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 18 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO INSURANCE INVESTMENTS.
HCR 81PassedMinor-BrownThis resolution recognizes May 11, 2022 as “School Nurse Appreciation Day” in Delaware. RECOGNIZING MAY 11, 2022 AS SCHOOL NURSE APPRECIATION DAY

Legislation Passed By House of Representatives

BillCurrent StatusSponsorSynopsisTitle
SCR 100PassedLopezThis resolution proclaims May 2022 "Cystic Fibrosis Awareness Month" in the State of Delaware. PROCLAIMING MAY 2022 "CYSTIC FIBROSIS AWARENESS MONTH" IN THE STATE OF DELAWARE.
HR 23PassedBriggs KingThis resolution proclaims May 2022 as "Community Action Month" in the State of Delaware.PROCLAIMING MAY 2022 AS "COMMUNITY ACTION MONTH" IN THE STATE OF DELAWARE.
SCR 102PassedBrownThis Senate Concurrent Resolution recognizes May 2022 as "Older Americans Month" in the State of Delaware. RECOGNIZING MAY 2022 AS "OLDER AMERICANS MONTH" IN THE STATE OF DELAWARE.

Senate Committee Assignments

Committee
Elections & Government Affairs
Executive
Labor
Legislative Oversight & Sunset

House Committee Assignments

Committee
Administration
Agriculture
Veterans Affairs

Senate Committee Report

Committee
Banking, Business & Insurance
Education
Elections & Government Affairs
Health & Social Services
Judiciary
Veterans Affairs

House Committee Report

Committee
Administration
Education
Health & Human Development
Judiciary

Senate Defeated Legislation

No Senate Defeated Legislation

House Defeated Legislation

No House Defeated Legislation

Nominations Enacted upon by the Senate

NomineeStatusCommission/BoardReappointment
Alpaugh, AllisonConfirmedDelaware Interscholastic Athletic AssociationNew
Booker, DennisConfirmedState Board of ElectionsNew
O'Hanlon, WilliamConfirmedDelaware Interscholastic Athletic AssociationNew
Tingle, MatthewConfirmedJustice of the PeaceNew