Legislative Candidate Interviews

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Delaware State Representative Candidates: 

State Representative – District 29

Representative William Bush (D)
1) Why are you running for the position of Senator/Representative? OR Why are you seeking re-election?  

First of all, I really enjoy what I do – I really love helping my constituents.  I really enjoy helping small businesses, especially through this current situation.  It has been great.  There are also things I want to do.  There are a lot of initiatives I have started and am working on, for example, the Ready in 6 – to help the businesses and bringing businesses to Delaware.

2) What is your position on increasing the minimum wage? If you do agree with an increase, what rate would you propose?

At this time, we do not need an increase in minimum wage.  I have looked at studies and data, and there is a time for incremental increases, but this is not the time.   We are trying to bring businesses to Delaware and businesses look at these rates when making their decisions, and our rate allows us to be competitive and to bring businesses here.   At this particular time, even before COVID, but with COVID, it is definitely not the time.

3) Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?  If yes, what measures would you take to protect businesses? If no, why?

I am on the record saying I do not support it.  I am not saying never, but not right now.  We have a lot to work through on this issue, such as the liability for our businesses. That is a big issue for me.  I also worry about the impact on our youth.  As it becomes more accessible, how will it affect them?  Again, I am not saying never, but, at this time, it is not appropriate. 

4) Would you support/or continue to support a Budget Smoothing Plan for the State?  If not, why?  

I think it is an important thing.  We need it.  I like the fact that the Governor went on his own initiative to do this and put it in place.   It is important and we are seeing the benefits of it now.  

5) How do you feel the State is handling the COVID issue in regard to the business community? What would you have done differently?

I think initially it was a new thing and we did not know how to handle it. I can appreciate the decisions the Governor had to make.  We were in a tough spot.  I understand the steps that are in place, however, I have been trying to push for the Phases to move more quickly.   I was very concerned with our small retailers not being able to open, but our larger box stores could.  That industry suffered.  When we moved from Phase 1 to Phase 2, my personal opinion was we need to do more to allow businesses to operate.  And as we all know, our restaurants have really been hurt.  Again, I understand that there are concerns, and that is why I pushed for outside seating.  I think we have gotten businesses through some of this with some of the funds that have been made available.  I am happy to have seen that, but I think we should have done more earlier for our businesses.  We have some things moving forward, but we need more.  We are still in Phase 2 and I wish we could move forward. 

6) Should the Governor have the authority to issue indefinite State of Emergencies?  Why or why not?

I think we need to have to have a “checks and balance” system in place.  For certain situations, yes, I understand it, but indefinitely, no. I do think it should have been looked at.  The legislature can convene to get rid of it.   I think there should be discussions around that, however, we do need to keep in mind the need for this as well. There are instances where the federal funds we are receiving were only possible because of the state of emergency.  Also, some of the special things that have been done, some of those special things for businesses will go away if the executive order goes away.  For instance, could outside seating for restaurants go away?  I do believe it is worth a discussion. 

7) As a result of the lack of revenue coming into the state budget due to the pandemic, would you support raising business taxes? 

No, I don’t think it is appropriate at this time, we need to find another way.  The point is:  businesses cannot absorb more right now.  We will need to be very smart in the way we spend.  We may need to make cuts.  If we can keep the economy going – if we can open up more, we will not have to go there. 

8) If there was proposed legislation next session to increase the mandated goals for Delaware and extend the compliance years (ex:  40% renewable power by year 2040), would you support or oppose that legislation? 

I am against the bill as written.  The way it was drafted was not done well.   It was very confusing.  I understand the need, but I cannot support that bill the way it was drafted. 

 

State Representative – District 29

Robin Hayes (R)
1) Why are you running for the position of Senator/Representative? OR Why are you seeking re-election?

Because I want to get the job done. I believe we need a balanced government and we need a balanced view of solving problems.  For example, during a meeting at Legislative Hall, when we were there representing an issue, I was told we needed a lobbyist to really be heard.  I think people need to be heard without a lobbyist.  I think “we, the people,” matter and that is why I am here again.

2) What is your position on increasing the minimum wage? If you do agree with an increase, what rate would you propose? I would have to sit and talk to the people who would be impacted by it – not just those receiving it but those paying it.  I think talking with the service industries, like our restaurateurs, for example, could help inform the situation.  We need to understand that some pay better because they want their workers to be considered as employees, not as contracted individuals.   I do not have a specific number in mind, but I do think we need to account for the cost of living in our number.  I also think we find ourselves here because the jobs that are affected by minimum wage were held by teenagers, and now these same jobs are being held by individuals older with more experience due to our current circumstances. 

3) Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?  If yes, what measures would you take to protect businesses? If no, why?

I am in favor of the medical component.  I have worked in the medical field for years and I have worked with those who suffer from HIV — and there are significant benefits.  I also work in mental health and substance abuse, and I know people have said that marijuana is not a gateway, but those who are affected have said it was a gateway for them.  So, I do not support the legalization.  Having said that, I also recognize that what people do in their own homes is a different situation.  As long as they keep it contained, I don’t think there is much we can do about it. 

4) Would you support/or continue to support a Budget Smoothing Plan for the State?  If not, why?  Yes – I would.  I was not happy with the decision our Governor made last year with the $110M and the schools in Wilmington.  Basically, they received support that the lower county schools did not.   His point of view was that the federal government would take care of Kent and Sussex counties.  

5) How do you feel the State is handling the COVID issue in regard to the business community? What would you have done differently? 

When I hear this question, I think about our Governor and what he has done.  He is making decisions on his own and not including the general assembly, which I do not agree with.  For example, when we were told we could not leave our houses without masks.  I started a mask drive to help businesses. We have hosted 5 events and have had amazing support for the project.   I have always believed we need to give the power back to the small business owners.  I am very disappointed that we did not let our businesses figure it out with the guidelines in place.  It also really offended me that big box stores were open and not our small businesses.   We did not do enough to help our small business. They are our backbone and we need to support them. 

6) Should the Governr have the authority to issue indefinite State of Emergencies? 

No, this is not how it is supposed to be. The way this is being done now is not about “we, the people.”  The first 30 days I think we all felt it was appropriate, but after that, it needed to be done differently.  We needed to start talking to make the decisions.  Again, the people have rights and they need to have an opportunity to be heard.

7) As a result of the lack of revenue coming into the state budget due to the pandemic, would you support raising business taxes?   No, I am not in favor of raising taxes.  We have money available – we just don’t spend it correctly. For example, in our education system, we are not having kids back in schools, but keeping buildings open – how is that cost effective?   We should have been educating our teachers on how to teach in this environment all summer.  We need to respond, not react.  Again, I believe we have money we just do not spend it wisely. 

8) If there was proposed legislation next session to increase the mandated goals for Delaware and extend the compliance years (ex:  40% renewable power by year 2040), would you support or oppose that legislation? 

My family, like many others, has looked at solar panels, however, we did not think it was a true cost savings – at least not for us. I don’t know if it really helps.  I would have to be able to understand this issue better.  

 

State Representative – District 34

Ade Kuforiji (D)
 1) Why are you running for the position of Senator/Representative? OR Why are you seeking re-election?

The issues that existed the first time I ran are still there, such as education.  One third of our budget is education and I think we underestimate the cost of education.  Another issue is that our schoolhouse is a place that offers many services to children – it is now a one stop shop.  I am very interested in this issue.  We need to also look at the regulatory requirements of our educators.  They are now the parent, the friend, the social worker. . . all of these things effect the actual instruction of the children. We need to help support education and manage that process.  We also need to make sure we hire the right people and the job will get done.  Another reason I am running again is to be a voice for the people who do not have one.  We need all our citizens to be taken care of, from our elderly to our children.   Finance also really interests me, and I believe we need to try to balance expenditures and revenues. 

2) What is your position on increasing the minimum wage? If you do agree with an increase, what rate would you propose?

When it is all said and done, most of us just want to pay our bills.  We have to look around and decide what it takes to make a living – to make basic payments – rent, car insurance, food, etc.   If minimum wage does not get to that amount, that is the issue.  Our current number needs to go up.   Based on the current amount, there is absolutely no money left at $10.00 an hour.  We need to get to at least $11.00 -that would be helpful.  That starts to get us where we need to be.  There are conflicts with raising the rate for the businesses, so we need to make sure we are also meeting the businesses’ needs. 

3) Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?  If yes, what measures would you take to protect businesses? If no, why? 

I don’t smoke or drink.  I am unaffected.  However, I know this is a big topic.  Personally, no, but I represent more than myself.  I am okay with legalization, but I am very concerned with the unintended consequences.  Businesses cannot have people coming to work high.  We cannot drug our entire community.  Recreational legalization is something people seem to be okay with, but we need to manage it.  We have to have controls.  Before I can totally support it, we need to think of the future.  We need to consider where this will take us. We have to look at all the issues. I have to look at all the issues and I could change my mind.  

4) Would you support/or continue to support a Budget Smoothing Plan for the State?  If not, why?

I am in the financial world, so I understand this – in principal, yes, I am in agreement with it.   Every year you have a base budget. Every time you add expenditures, the budget grows.  I do like what Governor Carney is doing.  You have a base budget, if you want to do additional things, you have to have money to allow you to do that.  This way the base budget does not change.  For example, the budget smoothing and the money from the tobacco industry would allow you to do extra things needed.  I do agree with it.   We need to save money.

5) How do you feel the State is handling the COVID issue in regard to the business community? What would you have done differently?

Personally, I feel that no one had a play book for this.  It has been handled well; it has been a challenging time.  I do feel bad for the businesses.  You can rebuild the economy, but when people die, you cannot bring them back.  I am a people person.  I do think the Governor has handled it well.  I do believe they tried to minimize the spread.  I know we will see some bankruptcy as a result of the businesses being closed.  I do support everything they are doing to try to support business.

6) Should the Governor have the authority to issue indefinite State of Emergencies?  Why or why not?  It is a tough deal.  I don’t know that anyone intended this extended state of emergency.  I do, however, think we need to factor in the need for state of emergency as it relates to receiving federal support.  If it is done to meet these requirements, yes.  If this was not a pandemic, no.  You have to look at the situation that has presented itself.  We have not had this in over 20 years – an issue of this concern.  No one wants to be here.  We are dealing with things we have never dealt with before.  We have to follow the best advice to do the right thing.  

7) As a result of the lack of revenue coming into the state budget due to the pandemic, would you support raising business taxes?  

In this moment, I do not think anyone will go for tax increases at this point. I would have to look at context and try to determine if we have exhausted all other avenues.  I would think that first we would have to cut expenditures.  I am an independent thinker and I would have to look at all the sides before I decide.  If it is the only way, we would have to look at it. 

8) If there was proposed legislation next session to increase the mandated goals for Delaware and extend the compliance years (ex:  40% renewable power by year 2040), would you support or oppose that legislation? 

I would have to look at the consumer side.  I think I would be more supportive of the consumers in this issue. 

 

State Representative – District 33

Representative Charles Postles (R)
1) Why are you running for the position of Senator/Representative? OR Why are you seeking re-election? 

Honestly, part of it is that we did not get to finish what we started this past session.  There are a number of initiatives I want to see advanced. For example, I proposed HB167 – an Administrative Flexibility Act — and it got assigned to committee, but never even had a hearing.  I want to see and make more progress happen.  

2) What is your position on increasing the minimum wage? If you do agree with an increase, what rate would you propose? 

I do not think we should legislate minimum wage. The market should regulate wages.  Supply and demand should also be part of dictating what wages are paid. If you been with a business for any time you are above minimum wage. Minimum wage was never meant to be a livable wage.  Minimum wage is for the starters in the workforce. People need to advance themselves. I am just not interested in any legislating regarding minimum wage.

3) Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?  If yes, what measures would you take to protect businesses? If no, why? 

No, I do not support it.  One, the liability of employers is just crazy.  Second, it does affect performance.  Why would I want an employee who is inhibited to perform?  Third, I am very irritated with those who say marijuana does not affect young people and their development.  The science is that it can have an effect on them and their development.   Why do we want to influence their ability to be good citizens who can support themselves?  Not supporting. 

4) Would you support/or continue to support a Budget Smoothing Plan for the State?  If not, why? 

Absolutely – very much so.  It was interesting that the Governor, by his Executive Order, adopted part of it.  I think he, too, realizes there is merit to it. Some suggest it should be permanent not administration based.   Any business knows there are cycles and the government is the same.  There are good and bad cycles.  We need a mechanism that will slow the reins and limitations to spending. I think this plan helps us with our growth and expenditures.  

5) How do you feel the State is handling the COVID issue in regard to the business community? What would you have done differently? 

First off, when it started, it was an unknown quantity.  No one knew for sure what we were dealing with and I understood the caution.  As time went on, the boogie man did not appear to be as bad as we thought.  We definitely need to protect our populations that are affected.  Our businesses were devasted and we need to realize that.   We are already seeing some that have closed already – and I fear more to come.  We have not opened the throttle at all.  We have not tried to recoup yet.  For our beach community, we will not know about the real affect until March.   When it was first declared as the first state of emergency – it was never meant to be extended to six months.  Legislators have not been part of that.  No consultation with the people’s representatives.  No alternatives were presented. The state of emergency orders were not done fairly.   How can you go into Walmart and buy products that small business could not open to sell?  It is hard to explain to them why they had to be closed.  This has been so difficult for our small business community to understand and compete. 

6) Should the Governor have the authority to issue indefinite State of Emergencies?  Why or why not?   

No, I do not think so.  No conversations have been had with members of legislators.  Some efforts will be made to limit.  30 days is fine when a quick response is needed.  After 30 days, the situation is no longer an emergency – input is needed.  Karyl Rattay is good at what she does, but she does not know anything about business.   The Governor should have had others advising him – those who understand business.    The Governor should have brought others in to advise.  When we were six weeks in, they were still saying they should be able to come up with a paper to define metrics and still, to this day, there is not one – that is very frustrating.  I hope we can craft something that can control this for the future.   Consultation with legislators is absolutely and definitely needed. 

7) As a result of the lack of revenue coming into the state budget due to the pandemic, would you support raising business taxes? 

My quick answer is no.   We raised corporate taxes years ago and I do not want to go back to that well –   pandemic or no pandemic.   When we did it, we needed to, but now, as far as small businesses –  no.    The best answer is to open business back up and let people go. There is another tax in the system to keep the economy going.  Our tax structure is fine when we are operating as normal.  When people are working and businesses are operating, our tax structure works just fine.  It is time to open this up and let this economy run.

8) If there was proposed legislation next session to increase the mandated goals for Delaware and extend the compliance years (ex:  40% renewable power by year 2040), would you support or oppose that legislation?  

No way.   The first question is: why do we need it?  We have made a lot of progress in our energy independence and efficiency, some of which has been hurtful to people and businesses.   You have to let the economy get going and function as it should – our revenue stream will be fine.  They will figure out where the equality is for the consumer.  Technology is changing all the time.  Fifteen years ago, no one had the idea.  The tech is evolving, and we are smart enough to give them good choices and good opportunities we can sustain.

 

State Representative – District 32

Cheryl Precourt (R)
Cheryl Precourt Interview 1) Why are you running for the position of Senator/Representative? OR Why are you seeking re-election?   

I am running because I grew up in Delaware and I have watched it decline from being a family friendly State.  We need safer neighborhoods.  We need less crime.   I also like talking to people in my community and I like to find answers for my community in my community.

2) What is your position on increasing the minimum wage? If you do agree with an increase, what rate would you propose?   I am not in favor of an increase.  I believe every small business is unique and they know what they can afford and what they cannot afford.   I very much believe in the free market system.   I also believe that many employers are already paying above minimum wage.  I also believe minimum wage is for those just coming into the workforce.

3) Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?  If yes, what measures would you take to protect businesses? If no, why? 

No, I am not in favor of recreational marijuana.  My husband is a mental health counselor and we have seen the effects of what started with recreational marijuana.  It is a gateway drug.  I also ask how can we expect employers to protect themselves?  There is no way for them to protect themselves is the answer.  

4) Would you support/or continue to support a Budget Smoothing Plan for the State?  If not, why?  

I support the 2%.   My concern with programs like this is that we will just keep piling money into an account and then people feel we just have a lot of money to spend.  That concerns me.  The higher the pot – the more political it becomes.  I do support the process.  I think it needs discussion. 

5) How do you feel the State is handling the COVID issue in regard to the business community? What would you have done differently?

It is very easy to say things in hindsight and, as we all know, hindsight is 2020.  I believe Delaware should have been in Phase 3 in June.  I think every business could have done COVID restrictions and I don’t think the numbers would be different.  This has all been so very bad for small businesses.  They are struggling and some are gone now.  I believe businesses would follow the rules to keep people safe.  I believe the businesses would do that.  Individuals have a choice to go or not go to a business.  You deserve to have the freedom to go if you want to.  I would have opened things sooner and at least looked at the holidays to increase and open, due to our beach communities and their season. This situation was very hurtful and destructive.  I have to say I appreciate what Gov. Hogan is doing.  And, I do give Gov. Carney credit.  This has been a very different situation.

6) Should the Governor have the authority to issue indefinite State of Emergencies?  Why or why not?  

Never in my life have I seen this.  A State of Emergency should be just that – emergent.  Our numbers do not equal an emergency at this point.  It should be over with.  I also think the General Assembly should have some authority and be heard in this situation.  They should be involved.  After all, they are the people hearing from their constituents. This is also causing fear in people every time he extends it.    Looking at the numbers, we should be back to normal.

7) As a result of the lack of revenue coming into the state budget due to the pandemic, would you support raising business taxes? 

No, I would not.  In fact, if I am elected, businesses get taxed more than about any other state which keeps us unable to compete with the states around us.  Why does a telephone line for a business cost 4 times more than one for a resident?  Let businesses make their decisions locally.  Let businesses do what they do.

8)  If there was proposed legislation next session to increase the mandated goals for Delaware and extend the compliance years (ex:  40% renewable power by year 2040), would you support or oppose that legislation?   

Absolutely do not support. Along those lines, we need to look at the entire renewable industry.  We need to find a medium to protect our environment but also be cost efficient and effective.   We have paid out millions/billions for energy due to some of the renewable sources we have.  

 

State Representative – District 36

Rep.  Bryan Shupe (R)
1) Why are you running for the position of Senator/Representative? OR Why are you seeking re-election?

I am running again because there is a lot of change that needs to happen on the state level.  And we need to focus on the voices we are hearing on the street.  For instance, right now the business community is really vocal.  Being a small business owner, former Mayor and a State Representative, many constituents come to me with ideas.  I believe in bringing people together under ideas instead of a political party.  In Milford, we had no political party which made is so great to bring all people together.  I believe in pushing for bipartisanship.   We have so many issues, not just in the business community, but also with our health care and education.  We can get a lot done, we just need to do it without party lines.

2) What is your position on increasing the minimum wage? If you do agree with an increase, what rate would you propose?

I do not support an increase in minimum wage.  I believe the private market will set that. I am a small business owner and from talking to other small business owners, if the wage goes to $15 an hour, businesses will have to lay off or decrease hours.  Many times small businesses are painted as just caring about the profits, but at the end of the day, they only have a finite amount of money and, if they are forced to raise minimum wage without being able to increase product cost, they cannot realistically grow their business. We need to look at it as a holistic view.  Walmart and Starbucks may be able to pay $15, but if you take one part of the equation out, you cannot expect businesses to run.  For our first 5 to 7 years, we did not take a paycheck because we had to reinvest into our business.   Now we are reinvesting again to grow.  

3) Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?  If yes, what measures would you take to protect businesses? If no, why? 

I am in favor of marijuana for medical use.  Many studies throughout the world prove it is better than other drugs.  As far as legalization of marijuana for recreational use, we have to have protections in place much like what we have for alcohol.  We need some type of road test (field sobriety tests).  We need to protect employers and other drivers on the road and even those using marijuana. You have to have protections for everyone.  As of right now, without these things, no.

4) Would you support/or continue to support a Budget Smoothing Plan for the State?  If not, why?

Definitely. The Budget Smoothing Plan is one of the smartest initiatives started by our state government in decades.  This Plan allows us to run more fiscally responsibly and allows us to grow our private market.  It also allows us to take any additional revenue in savings for bad years. We would already have resources instead of raising taxes or cutting expenses.  We saw this years ago with an increase in transfer taxes and cut the grant in aid budget. We have seen, through COVID, that literally anything can happen and can affect our entire state and national economy – the best protection is budget smoothing.

5) How do you feel the State is handling the COVID issue in regard to the business community? What would you have done differently? 

I think it was certainly okay in the beginning to be cautious about the virus and how it would affect the general population.  As data started coming in, we found out that we needed to protect our vulnerable population.  We needed a smarter balance between restrictions on businesses, like having big box stores vs small businesses.  Essential businesses vs. non-essential businesses.  Then we opened with limitations and restrictions.  It was very disheartening for many to see the big box stores open and small businesses closed.   It was very confusing for the public to see big box stores open, driving the herd, and hearing that they need to wear face masks and social distancing, and yet small businesses could still not open.     We saw a hard hit in our local economies, but fortune 500 companies outside of our state were making huge profits.  We should have had a focus on helping small businesses and keeping them open.   We should have worked with mom and pop stores to open them safely.  This could have reignited communities.  This could have really promoted community interaction.

6) Should the Governor have the authority to issue indefinite State of Emergencies?  Why or why not?  

No, I do not.  There was a piece of legislation drafted that went out this year but had no movement. I understand we may need to have a state of emergency for 30 days, but after that, it needs to be voted on by assembly.  Also, by having the assembly involved, it allows residents to have a say through their representatives. This also points to the foundation of our democratic republic.  We are meant to have checks and balances and we need that.  I intend to support the drafted legislation in the up-coming session.    

7) As a result of the lack of revenue coming into the state budget due to the pandemic, would you support raising business taxes? 

Definitely not.  The last thing and most harmful thing we should ever do following a crisis is to raise taxes.  Businesses were already hit by COVID 19 and state restrictions.  Most businesses have been closed for months on end.  Then businesses had to traverse through all the miscommunication from the state on how to open through the 2 phases.  They are struggling to keep their lights on.   We need to look for more incentives for our small businesses to grow and hire more people.  We need to have our businesses become more independent by giving them opportunities to grow their businesses by things like purchasing their own buildings or supporting on-line sales.

8) If there was proposed legislation next session to increase the mandated goals for Delaware and extend the compliance years (ex:  40% renewable power by year 2040), would you support or oppose that legislation?  

If represented the way written, no I would not support it.   We need to look at renewable energy, but it needs to run through the free market.  When government regulates, costs are always higher for the consumer.  With COVID-19 and no in person sessions, we had all agreed no legislation (other than COVID related legislation) would run, so it really bothered me that this legislation was being pushed through on the last night of the session.   In my opinion, this is not a good way to propose legislation.

 

State Representative – District 34

Rep. Lyndon Yearick (R)
1) Why are you running for the position of Senator/Representative? OR Why are you seeking re-election?
  

Because I can still make a difference in the state.  I want to continue to help constituents.  I can help and make a true impact.  Within the last 5 – 6 months with staff we have helped many constituents with gaining their unemployment.  We are also working with the community and neighborhoods to promote neighborhood safety.  We need people to feel secure in their homes.  I also believe I still have the opportunity to reach out where we can make a big difference, not just outside the building but inside Legislative Hall.   Equally as important to me is to modify or deter legislation that affects individuals’ rights and the government’s involvement.   I think I can capitalize on my experience and I hope I can do better than I have done. 

2) What is your position on increasing the minimum wage? If you do agree with an increase, what rate would you propose?

I have been opposed to minimum wage increases for my entire 6 years in office.  I will continue to oppose.  One: it is an initial wage for first time job seeks – young adults; two: 8% of all Delawareans rely on minimum wage for their full employment. To increase it, you decrease those who need it – those looking for first time or part time.  Also, this increase would hurt our agricultural community.  This increase would affect their international competitiveness, which results in competitive disadvantage for them.  Also, non-profits are affected. They already work on razor margins.  You cannot arbitrarily increase our minimum wage from $9.75 to $10.  You have to look at the cost of living wage in the area.  An increase inflates labor and the cost of doing business.  Market needs to set the minimum wage not the government.  The market will bear what it will bear.   

3) Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?  If yes, what measures would you take to protect businesses? If no, why? 

I have also opposed this legislation for 6 years.  Research has shown it does not eliminate the black -market sales – it does not go away.  Underage consumption increases.   It will not be the “save all” for the economy that people think it will be.  Also, we have no THC measurement tools.  We cannot prove how impaired someone is.  We have to think about the police how do they tell if you are or are not impaired.  Also, research shows that marijuana does affect brain development of young.  Why make it more difficult for young adults to get a good education?  It is just another obstacle.  And what about the employees who have CDL Driver’s Licenses? Again, how do you measure if they are impaired?  Who wants to be responsible for that?  Where does it stop once it starts?

4) Would you support/or continue to support a Budget Smoothing Plan for the State?  If not, why? 

I agree with the concept.  I was not in favor of putting it in our Delaware Constitution.  I think it was an unnecessary step.   If we are going to continue to acquire reserves, let’s put it back into people’s pockets.  I would like to see tax credits for residents.  I think that could be a better way to use the money.   This year $50 to $70 m was used to go into FY 2021 budget.   In hindsight, if we had provided tax cuts – it could have been recirculated and it would come back into the economy.  We are good at taking other people’s money – escheat, etc.   We have savings.  What gives us the right to take the money?  Why are we not giving it back to the residents?  Those are some of the questions I have.    

5) How do you feel the State is handling the COVID issue in regard to the business community? What would you have done differently? 

This is a tough one.  I believe the Governor, in his initial approach, was hard to disagree with.  However, I was not in favor of the decisions about business closures.  I understand to flatten the curve, he is trying to control entities, but he has no control over individuals hosting parties at their homes.  In essence, he is trying to take control of what he can.  However, restaurants and other businesses should have been able to open and do what they needed to do. We need to have confidence in our businesses.   Again, we have to agree, the goal post has continued to change.  We looked at many numbers:  hospitalization, deaths, etc.  I have concern over the care of long-term care facilities also.   I also feel we were somewhat reactive to industries in Sussex County where their numbers could be based more on living arrangements then work environments.   

I would have done some things differently.  For example:  We would be in phase 3.  I would have everyone making their own decisions – businesses, churches, schools, etc.  Again, it comes back to having confidence in our businesses and organizations. 

6) Should the Governor have the authority to issue indefinite State of Emergencies?  Why or why not?

No, I think we have learned now about this and what can happen.  Tighter restrictions are being proposed.  We need better and formal communications between the executive and administrative branches.  By doing so, we can be better prepared and deal with a situation like this in the future — and we can do it better in the future.   

7) As a result of the lack of revenue coming into the state budget due to the pandemic, would you support raising business taxes?  

No, I would not.   There are increases in the operating budget – 4%.   I think there will be some flexibility with CARES ACT spending dollars to back fill some short falls.   To ask more of businesses who have been so affected, it is not the right thing to do.   For example, we have unemployment insurance increases and plastic bag requirements on the table for next year already, and we still have the increase in minimum wage that was approved coming at our businesses.   We cannot ask for more from them.

8) If there was proposed legislation next session to increase the mandated goals for Delaware and extend the compliance years (ex:  40% renewable power by year 2040), would you support or oppose that legislation? 

I do not support it.  It is terrible legislation.  It mandates a portfolio that the market should dictate, not the government.  This takes away our competitive edge with our neighboring states.  Energy is one of our top costs for business already.  The last thing we need to do is mandate it to cost more.   I believe in the market dictating costs, not the government.  

 

Delaware State Senate Candidates:

State Senate – District 14

Senator Bruce Ennis (D)
1) Why are you running for the position of Senator/Representative? OR Why are you seeking re-election? Being a long-time servant in both the house and the senate, I have experience.  I have time and I know the issues.  I also have to say I will always do my best to serve my constituents, and I can do that by remaining in my seat.

2) What is your position on increasing the minimum wage? If you do agree with an increase, what rate would you propose?

Many of my constituents are in labor in my district and that is why I was on HB 47.  I agree with the Women’s League in support of an increase in minimum wage.  In order for people to afford living, it is far above $10 dollars and hour.  You already see both parents having to work.  I have supported youth wages also.  I believe they do not have experience and therefore, they should not be in the same category as someone who has years of experience.  The proposed wage is $15 an hour in HB 47 and, as I said, my constituents need it.

3) Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?  If yes, what measures would you take to protect businesses? If no, why? 

Positively not.  I was one of few in my caucus who did not support it.  I agree with AAA: there are already enough drunks on the highway. We do not need more people on our roads who are under the influence.    My opponent supports legalization and has stated that it is the reason she is running. I think it brings too much for businesses in liability.

4) Would you support/or continue to support a Budget Smoothing Plan for the State?  If not, why?

 I think it is a good idea. I also support only spending 98% of the budget saving 2% to deposit in the rainy-day fund. Had we not had the money from the budget smoothing this year, I don’t know what we would have done.  

5) How do you feel the State is handling the COVID issue in regard to the business community? What would you have done differently?

I believe the health of individuals is important. I also believe that the Governor has done as good a job as anyone.  I think we should be focusing on the elderly and those with underlining conditions.  I also think the new Grant program is important to help businesses open and stay open.  Even though some are open, people are not going out.  They are not comfortable.  I think, as long as there is no defined treatment – no vaccine, our economy is going to continue to be hurt.  We need to support our businesses.  We also need to retrain those who have lost their jobs.  We need to get those folks back out in the workforce.  

6) Should the Governor have the authority to issue indefinite State of Emergencies? Why or why not?  He thinks so.   I have actually not read all the legislation behind it, so I do not know what to say about it.  I do believe that stakeholders need to be involved in these decisions.  For example, the restaurant association and the chambers should be included and involved in making these decisions.       

7) As a result of the lack of revenue coming into the state budget due to the pandemic, would you support raising business taxes? 

In view of the pandemic and what is expected, we should not be raising taxes or making more strict regulations.  We just can’t do that.  

8) If there was proposed legislation next session to increase the mandated goals for Delaware and extend the compliance years (ex:  40% renewable power by year 2040), would you support or oppose that legislation?

 That bill was introduced late and there were a lot of discussions in caucus about not running the bill.  Surprisingly, I was put on the bill, but I would not sign it.  Again, it is not the right time for that.  I support green energy, but do not support it with no caps.  I do not support the McDowell Bill. 

 

State Senate – District 15

Jaci Hugg (D)


1) Why are you running for the position of Senator/Representative?  Why are you seeking re-election?

After working with Senator Ennis and being in Legislative Hall, I wanted to step up. I think we need to learn how to work together across the aisle — and I think I can do that.

2) What is your position on increasing the minimum wage? If you do agree with an increase, what rate would you propose?

I have no idea what the right rate is, but what I do think is that it has to go up with inflation.  I think we should always be in that conversation, and I think businesses need to be in the room to be part of the discussion.  We also need to keep our rate local.

3) Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?  If yes, what measures would you take to protect businesses? If no, why? 

I do support legalization.  I know the business community has concerns with impaired employees and I think safety measures need to be in place.  We need some type of a THC measurement tool.   I think state police need something also when they pull people over to know if people are impaired. 

4) Would you support/or continue to support a Budget Smoothing Plan for the State?  If not, why?  Totally in favor of that, it saved us and it is proven that it works.

5) How do you feel the State is handling the COVID issue in regard to the business community? What would you have done differently?

I feel like it has been done well.  I am a proponent of masks and social distancing.  I guess we had to come to a halt to regroup.  We have never been here before or at least not since 1918.  I did like the town halls that were held and I tried to get many of my friends who own small businesses to participate.   I have friends with small businesses, and they were able to work through the system to open back up.

6) Should the Governor have the authority to issue indefinite State of Emergencies?  Why or why not? I don’t know.  I think that is a constitutional issue and I would have to look into it.  Our numbers are coming down and I am comfortable going out.   I would rather take the safe side, but we still need to help the businesses out.

7) As a result of the lack of revenue coming into the state budget due to the pandemic, would you support raising business taxes? 

No, because they are already hurting we cannot hit them again.   We cannot go that route.   We could legalize marijuana to make up the difference. 

8) If there was proposed legislation next session to increase the mandated goals for Delaware and extend the compliance years (ex:  40% renewable power by year 2040), would you support or oppose that legislation?

 I commend Senator McDowell for trying to do this because I do feel we need to protect our environment.   I think we need more work on it and I hope it comes back so it can be worked on.  I also know our energy companies are not in favor of this legislation. 

 

State Senate – District 15

Sen. Dave Lawson (R)
1) Why are you running for the position of Senator/Representative? OR Why are you seeking re-election?

Because the job I started 10 years ago is not done.  I started a number of projects and they are not complete.   And now with COVID, we are going to have a lot of work to do to get our businesses back up and running.   

2) What is your position on increasing the minimum wage? If you do agree with an increase, what rate would you propose?

No increase.

3) Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?  If yes, what measures would you take to protect businesses? If no, why? 

No, I do not, because of what it brings about.  There will be a long list of problems with employees and how do businesses/employers monitor it.  I believe it is not a road we should ever travel.   As a State Policeman, I saw enough accidents resulting from people under the influence.  We do not need another product that will increase the likelihood of more traffic accidents.  

4) Would you support/or continue to support a Budget Smoothing Plan for the State?  If not, why

I would, but we need to increase the amount we put in.

5) How do you feel the State is handling the COVID issue in regard to the business community? What would you have done differently?

 I think they have handled it terribly.  It has been devasting to let the big boxes survive and the small businesses die.  Why could you go into a store like Central Tractor to buy a product, but you could not go to an area small business to buy the same product?  Why is the government picking winners and losers? If you can go to Walmart, you should be able to go to church or go to any store.  We should be able to go into businesses and keep our economy rolling.  The Governor has devasted our state.  We could handle the illness as it came.  We have never shut down the state because of illness.  I would have changed that totally.  I tried to and it went nowhere.  

6) Should the Governor have the authority to issue indefinite State of Emergencies?  Why or why not?

 Absolutely not.  The intention was for one 30-day extension.  We should come back with a new law.   With what we have right now, where is the people’s voice?  The way it is now, there is no voice of the people.  

7) As a result of the lack of revenue coming into the state budget due to the pandemic, would you support raising business taxes?  

No, I would not support it.  They will, however, get raised anyway when we have to pay back the unemployment.  It is going to happen.  We did it back in 2009 and it is coming back.  If it gets enacted, it will be ugly.  

8) If there was proposed legislation next session to increase the mandated goals for Delaware and extend the compliance years (ex:  40% renewable power by year 2040), would you support or oppose that legislation?  

It is a bad practice. Energy is already costly.  Businesses look at us and leave, or don’t come here.  They do the same with our education.  I cannot support this.   

 

State Senate – District 14

Craig Pugh  (R)
Craig Pugh Interview 1) Why are you running for the position of Senator/Representative? OR Why are you seeking re-election?

 I served the town of Leipsic as the Mayor for 18 years. We focused on unifying our area through our business and families – and we have grown that unity. I would like to create unity on a larger level.  We are a small town and a small business, and many, like me, are fisherman.   We could not get much done at Legislative Hall because we could not have our voice heard and that happened for years.  So, we knew we had to find a way around it.  When I became Mayor, we decided to tie our folks in the community together so we could speak as a larger, unified voice.   We had one agenda and we supported that.  Now when we walk into Legislative Hall, we have one plan and one organization. Divisiveness is not good.   We have been more effective and have seen more bills supporting for our town, and our fishing industries.  By being in office, I can do a greater good to tie all municipalities together. 

2) What is your position on increasing the minimum wage? If you do agree with an increase, what rate would you propose? 

I don’t know if there is a right number.  When I started working, minimum wage was $2.35 an hour. I know $15 is being floated.  To me, raising the rate in any business I have operated goes along with the quality of the employee’s work.  If you are capable of helping the business be profitable, your income should reflect that.  Ground level wages should not be top dollar wages. Training and years of experience add to the total of an employee’s worth. Time and loyalty should be reflected in the wage. That is important to me and that is the way we run our business.  I am not a fan of setting a high minimum wage. 

3) Do you support the legalization of marijuana? Why or why not?  If yes, what measures would you take to protect businesses? If no, why?

To each their own, I guess.  However, I think we have a problem with marijuana, and that is that we do not have a test to determine if you are under the influence and how much.  Until they have that, I do not think we can legalize it.   As for recreational use, I don’t really care one way or the other.  Testing is the issue I have.  We have to keep people safe in our businesses and on our roadways.  In other states, I see cannabis being used for medicinal purposes and it seems to be quite an industry.   It appears that Delaware is behind, and if it can become an industry, we would just have to make sure we can keep people safe by being able to measure the level in their system.  We do not want to miss the boat.     

4) Would you support/or continue to support a Budget Smoothing Plan for the State?  If not, why?

I can tell you we have something like that in Leipsic that we established about 18 years ago.  It is substantial and you lean on it in hard times.  I would support the idea.  It sounds wise to me.  

5) How do you feel the State is handling the COVID issue in regard to the business community? What would you have done differently?    

Probably the thing that bothers me the most is the extension of the emergency order.  It needs to be better defined. And another issue: Who are essential workers?  My wife went to work, but our legislators were not required – they were not essential. One-person ruling has taken over.  The voice of the people should have been part of this after 30 days.  And the people should consistently be heard.  Delaware needs to respond to all emergency issues, but people should not lose their constitutional rights. Your rights do not take a vacation. We can do that and still be safe.  We can handle decisions as adults.  We all know someone who is at risk at home or at work, and we figure out how to deal with that. We need to go to work to keep the economy going. Our businesses being closed down is more disastrous than our health.  The message of hysteria and panic is not a good one for our government to present.  I tried to put a program together that is really similar to one already in place in Delaware.  This one was for our fishing industry, specifically our striped bass market.  Prices were crushed completely and killed the market.  But with higher marketability out of state, the loss was huge to many communities. So, we had asked the Governor’s office to fund the program like they do the program to feed the hungry with deer. I put the program together and we were going to follow all the regulations they have.  The cost was $5.50 a pound.   We could supply the fish to Meals on Wheels and Food Banks, etc.  This program could have fed people and helped the fishing industry.  Then the call came from DNREC/Division of Fishery and they could not handle logistics.  We already had that all worked out.    And they went back a few times.  We needed $500,000 to fund it.  They denied it.  The fishery group did find some other ways.  And we also were lucky when crabs started running.  Who knew crabs were a likable take out dinner?  There was a substantial demand and the price escalated – and helped the waterman industry.    

6) Should the Governor have the authority to issue indefinite State of Emergencies?  Why or why not? Answered under #5.

7) As a result of the lack of revenue coming into the state budget due to the pandemic, would you support raising business taxes? 

No need for that, we just need to find a different way.  I would rather promote businesses to promote their income which would grow our tax base.  For example, I have a friend who makes a bottled sauce and none of it is done here in Delaware.  Same issue with seafood in Delaware – processing of produce and seafood we are lacking – if we could promote those industries we could stimulate growth through our tax base.   I would like to see this type of industry in Delaware and would like to see business growth instead of tax increases. 

8) If there was proposed legislation next session to increase the mandated goals for Delaware and extend the compliance years (ex:  40% renewable power by year 2040), would you support or oppose that legislation?  As technology gets better, better dependability may come with that.  It seems like the sourcing of the new technology is the question.   It is not fair to citizens to have them rely on something that is not dependable. I will say that, when our power goes out, it creates a real safety hazard for our public.  If we go to this, it must be reliable and dependable and will service our people.    

 

Kent County Levy Court Commissioner Candidates: 

Kent County Levy Court Commissioner – District 3

Allan Angel
1) What is the single biggest issue facing Kent County? 

Right now, with economic development, land use, and the way things are progressing, we have been taking an initiative to help businesses stay in business.   We worked with the Chamber for the COVID PPE Starter Kits.  We are trying to keep businesses moving forward.   We need to cut our red tape – we have cut some, but we need to eliminate more.  We also need to continue to make our plan for So. Frederica and Little Heaven. 

2) What do you believe are or should be Kent County’s priorities for economic development?  

First, we need to keep our manufacturing focus.  We have three new manufacturers coming to Kent County (and possibly another two) – this would mean $77 million dollars and about 800 jobs, which also means we need to make sure our housing is up to date.  We need our businesses operating and thriving.  When the Forest main sewer went down, we worked well with everyone to get that repaired and up and running.  We need to keep communicating and partnering.  KCLC is great at partnering.  KCLC is there to help whether it is a large issue, a small issue, or a non-profit or program. We partner at all levels. We have given money to Boys & Girls Club, Bowers Beach, and increased our Strategic Business Fund.  The DE Turf is now back up and running.  And now we have a developer looking at a water park near DE Turf.

3) What is your opinion about the county’s planning & permitting processes?  If given the opportunity what would be the top 3 things you would change? 

Kent County is moving forward.  We are always looking at ways to do things more efficiently and effectively.  

4) What is your number one project you will be promoting/sponsoring in Kent County during your term as commissioner? 

When you look at the Rockport Study and the amount of people moving here, we need to have our policies and ordinances in place to move Kent County forward.  We do not want to fall behind.  We also have some educational issues to address.  We are working on that now with our Technology and Science Grants.  Economic development and job development continue to need our focus. We also must remember our DAFB.  They are one of our economic drivers – always.  We also need to look at our disaster preparedness plan – it is an area of concern to me.  

Kent County Levy Court Commissioner – District 5

Clint Brothers


1) What is the single biggest issue facing Kent County?

Economic development. We need more high paying jobs and we need do the things necessary to get them here.

2) What do you believe are or should be Kent County’s priorities for economic development?

I believe we need to develop our employment centers outlined in the comprehensive plan. We need more “shovel ready” sites to attract employers. I believe we also need to work with the state on the rural broadband initiative. Companies coming here will want high speed internet for their businesses, but also for their employees at their homes, especially in the age of telecommuting. There are some unfortunate challenges for Kent County in this area, specifically the restriction on tower height as bloosurf was using existing towers and access to the optimum licensed frequency. I believe we also need to look at a voluntary inclusionary housing program to aide in bringing more affordable housing to Kent County. There is a huge need. We should also remain active in farmland preservation to maintain a balance.

3) What is your opinion about the county’s planning & permitting processes?   If given the opportunity what would be the top 3 things you would change?

#1. The My gov online system for permitting needs to be implemented. It has taken three years. We need to finally get it up and running.

#2. We need to look at conditional use and implementing more “by right” zoning to help attract more business as long as the businesses coming in would fit the area. This would save businesses time and money. A good example: a motorcycle repair shop owner wanted to bring his business into the industrial park that houses Fordham and Dominion brewery. He would have had to get a conditional use permit, so he chose another site instead. Luckily it was still in Kent County.

#3. We need a quicker less cumbersome process; it takes 12 to 24 months typically in Delaware to go through the permitting process. We need to work with the state to implement “ready in 6” meaning 6-month process to be competitive with surrounding states.

4) What is your number one project you will be promoting/sponsoring in Kent County during your term as commissioner?

The biggest thing we need to do is simplify the permitting process, making it simpler and quicker to get through the permitting process. This includes the aforementioned reform of the conditional use process and getting more shovel ready sites particularly in the employment centers of Smyrna, Harrington/Farmington, Little Heaven, South Frederica, and Cheswold, as outlined in the comprehensive plan.

Kent County Levy Court Commissioner – District 1

Doug Chervenak

1)What is the single biggest issue facing Kent County?

From my perspective as a family doctor, the looming issue is a shortage of primary care physicians, particularly in District 1 of Levy Court.  And the situation will get worse as doctors retire. We need to promote private practices that have a stake in the community and will stay.  Too many employed physicians have come and gone in our community, which does not fill the gap in health care. Urgent care centers do not provide the continuous and comprehensive care that provides the best results.

2)What do you believe are or should be the Kent County’s priorities for economic development?

            My motto is “Smart Choices make Better Communities.”  Any new projects must be analyzed for their impact on infrastructure first before any development. Then, ask how this project will maintain or enhance the lives of our community.  Too many times I have thought, “Why did the county approve this when the roads cannot sustain the traffic?”  We need to build cooperation with state and local entities to develop consistent and beneficial plans.  We need community broadband available to all, especially in this educational environment. By adding this technology, the county would be more attractive to higher end jobs. We need to tap the universities’ resources as well to aid in the right education for the better paying jobs.  

Aviation is another area of importance in attracting business. We are the only state that has no major air access to our capital and to the resort areas.  The only state!  I would endeavor to change that and bring the higher paying jobs associated with aviation.  And if major corporations can be assured that they can get here easily, they would consider that a strong factor in locating here.

3)What is your opinion about the county’s planning and permitting processes?  If given the opportunity what would be the top 3 things you would change?

Having built a home as the general contractor, I have first-hand knowledge of the process.  It was fraught with great difficulty, delays, and poor customer service.  This was not an unusual comment I heard from others. The employees need to know they work for us not the other way around.  I believe that once the plans have been properly approved, and once it’s been established that the project is going to benefit our community, permitting should be a smooth process.

4)What is your number one project you will be promoting in Kent County during your term as commissioner? 

As a physician, I will provide my medical knowledge and expertise to the Levy Court.  This is very important, as one third of the County budget is involved in the provision of medical services though the paramedic, emergency medical technician, and ambulance programs.  I will be able to give the Levy Court the knowledge they need to maintain a first-class program. In addition, I will be promoting the recruitment of primary care physicians as previously mentioned. Both projects are deeply involved in the health care of our citizens. Levy Court needs a doctor!

Kent County Levy Court Commissioner -District 1

Joanne Masten

1)What is the single biggest issue facing Kent County?

Economic development – bringing in meaningful jobs with good pay and good benefits for residents.  We have to do to this.  I am a member of KEP (Kent Economic Partnership) and am happy to be a member of the group.   They are focused on economic development.  

2)What do you believe are or should be Kent County’s priorities for economic development?

Again, bringing jobs to the county.   We need taxes and, in order to get them, people have to have jobs. I was familiar with KEP years ago and saw a lot of focus placed on community gardens – they are great, but we need more.  When Linda was interviewed, it was very clear she had a plan.   She is meeting with various companies to get them here.   I was also part of the Rockport Study which I think was a great. It has helped us to determine what we need to bring rather it is medical, logistic supplies, and/or warehousing.   We need to focus on where we are sourcing products from and try to bring them in as well.   Many wheels are already in motion.   The Greater Kent Committee (GCK) and the municipalities in Kent County are also involved in the effort.   If it does not happen under Linda it will not happen. Kent County is on target.  Another primary concern for me is Smyrna and the 220 acres the community is on the hook for at the Duck Creek Park.  When I was mayor, the first thing was to create infrastructure at the site which we did.   The site is now shovel ready.  Actually, KRM will be putting up a 60,000 square foot spec building.   Build one and they will come.   KEP, in my opinion, is on target now.  The one thing I know is we must do it on our own in Kent County. 

3)What is your opinion about the county’s planning & permitting processes? If given the opportunity what would be the top 3 things you would change?

Cumbersome – too much time spent trying to get through the process. Talked to many of the commissioners, and Chuck Spiegelman, and others in the real estate industry.   Again, it just takes too long to get things done.  I understand the person who runs the department has her view of the process. It may be time for changes in the department.  It may be time for better accountability and assessment tools. There is too much bureaucracy.  The guidelines need to be reviewed yesterday.  They are outdated.  Streamlining the ordinances needs to be reviewed, refined, or eliminated – again, many are outdated.  Many of them are just not working in today’s business world. I also think reporting mechanisms need to be in place. Let’s cut the nonsense out. We had the same thing in Smyrna, we need what is good today, not what was good 20 years ago. 

4)What is your number one project you will be promoting/sponsoring in Kent County during your term as commissioner?

 Jobs for Kent County – good paying jobs with good benefits.  Of course, I am partial to Smyrna.  When I was mayor, the town was on the hook for a 200-acre economic development park.  It doesn’t matter where new business goes – bringing jobs here is what has to happen.  We want our residents to be able to buy a house, have a car, and feed a family. $8.00 is not working, but $15.00 is not the answer either.

I also think we need to really be looking at Broadband internet development.   We have to have it. Businesses need it, and students need it. Kids in our towns don’t all have it and if kids are not going to school, they need technology.  

 

Kent County Levy Court Commissioner – District 5

Jody Sweeney

1)What is the single biggest issue facing Kent County?

It is still economic development.  There are so many moving parts to that.  We have job creation zones, water and sewer development, good parks, and we have even – through impact fees -supported our schools.   These are all things people look at when they look to locate in an area.  Linda Parkowski is doing a fantastic job bringing businesses here.   We need to figure out what we can do to help small businesses start and grow. We must make the county a place that is attractive for businesses to come and where small businesses will grow. 


2)What do you believe are or should be Kent County’s priorities for economic development?

We have addressed many of them.  The question now is: How do we expand on what we have done to create shovel ready locations so businesses can come in? This is what we have to do now.  We need developers to come in and build a three-story building creating “a business park.”   We need money to do some of this economic development, and if we want to do that, we will have to increase taxes.  We have to be ready when the businesses come.  We have done a lot to attract new jobs.  And look at DE Turf – we have so much coming to that area.  Who would have thought we would have a water park in Kent County?  And that will come with a variety of other businesses, such as shops, restaurants, etc.

3)What is your opinion about the county’s planning & permitting processes? If given the opportunity, what would be the top 3 things you would change?  

We are already doing one of the biggest things – we are implementing MYGOV which will give everyone the ability to submit plans online. Everything will then be online – no more paper.   When it is submitted and approved, it goes back to the developer.  The developer never has to come to the Kent County building to develop here.  They will also have the ability to pay for permits online.  This will increase the speed to process plans by going online.  There is still a problem with the plus process and DelDot permitting.  We need their speed to improve. One thing we must do is address the leadership in our planning department.  We need to coach or find individuals who will adapt and adopt. They have to be advocates for economic development.   


4)What is your number one project you will be promoting/sponsoring in Kent County during your term as commissioner?

I want the gymnasium expansion on the capital projects list.   We want an indoor field connected to our building on New Burton Road to allow an indoor turf field for soccer, lacrosse, and field hockey.  It also needs to include an indoor track (6 lanes), then we may be able to get some funding for this project from DEA.  This project could have great potential for our county.  

 

The General Election will be held on Tuesday, November 3, 2020. 

Please make your voice count and VOTE!

Polls are open from 7 am – 8 pm.

For more information about this year’s voting process, please visit www.ivote.de.gov/VoterView.