News from Sen. Simpson

Sen. F. Gary Simpson
Milford

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

It was a long-long night on June 30, the last day of the legislative session. Fortunately, compromises were hashed out which enabled us to balance the budget and leave town without too many hurt feelings. We were able to find a way to build funds to repair our infrastructure – roads and bridges as well as ways to support Municipal Street Aid, Community Transportation Funds, Grant-

In-Aid to non-profits, etc. Obviously, each of these three areas benefit communities throughout Delaware.

These communities will now receive financial funding for street repairs and other transportation related needs. Many of the non-profits and the school districts in the 18th will also receive funding to help balance their financial budgets. Fortunately the threat that came from the legislature concerning cuts to the county and municipal realty transfer tax never came to fruition as lawmakers were inundated with calls from their local governments who let them know in no uncertain terms that they were displeased with the loss of that revenue source.

One of the best things to come out of the legislature this year that will have a positive effect on municipalities throughout Delaware deals with Prevailing Wage. Part of the negotiation that went on with the Infrastructure package dealt with changes to the prevailing wage, both in the amount of the cost of road projects before prevailing wage was allowed to “kick-in” and also how the prevailing wage formula is set. While prevailing wage is a difficult subject to understand without going into a long discourse, the thing to remember is that with the changes that were just enacted, many of our public works projects and transportation projects should end up costing between 20% – 25% less, thus not only saving money for our communities, but stretching our dollars further, and hopefully, putting more people back to work.

Another good thing to come out of our negotiations around the infrastructure issue was that the Governor committed himself personally to me to form a high-level task force that will review State spending. I’m not talking nickel and dime issues, but rather major policy shifts that might result in meaningful efficiencies around such things as our energy policy, how we fund pensions, how we can save money in our medicaid program, how we contract for state purchases, etc. I’m very hopeful that such a review will put Delaware on a face forward approach to how we conduct the business of our state.

With all that, I hope you are having a great summer. Iif you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to call me at 302-744-4134 or email me at: Gsimpson@udel.edu

All the best.

The viewpoints page features letters to the editor. To submit a letter, email mc@newszap.com. Letters are not the views of the Milford Chronicle or Independent Newsmedia Inc USA.

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.